I have never seen Ann Widdecombe completely lose her temper in an interview before, but in this week's RIGHT ON on Telegraph TV she absolutely shrieks at Andrew Pierce when he continually interrupts her on the issue of MPs' second homes. Watch it in the video box or HERE.
RIGHT ON also includes this week's HEFFER CONFRONTED where Simon Heffer and I discuss Nicolas Sarkozy.
Andrew Pierce got the daft hubristic self important MP rattled. Well done Andrew. Ms Widdicomble went native along with 90% of MP's on joining Club Westminster.
Ms Widdicombe you are defending 'Spanish practices' and look and sound idiotic in so doing.
No harm in her "losing it", but she did subsequently offend by interrupting the other guest.
My main question from the interview is whether it really is so that MPs may not claim for betterment of, as against repairs to 2nd homes.
As for Widdy's complaint about lack of security in publishing addresses, why not limit these to just the first part of the postal code.
Ann Widdecombe seemed to make reasonable points in an arguably unreasonable way. Where was she wrong and where was she right, in points of fact?
For one moment I thought I might be watching a new PG Tips advertisement in the making but alas not.
That certainly woke me up on a lazy Sunday afternoon. In my opinion, he got off lightly as there was a knife in front of her.
Its a great pity that she's retiring at the next election - she would have been an ideal replacement for Martin as Speaker.
Surely Cameron should award her a peerage after the election and give her the job of getting the "feckless" off their ar*s*s and back into work ?
"getting the 'feckless' off their ar*s*s..."
You mean BA managers?
Thank you, I'll be here all week. Do try the veal.
Working Class Hero - I don't eat veal. What happened to the babaganoush? You had babaganoush last week.
Loopy bint has ignored the point that it's our bleeding cash that she's spending - 'betterment' or not.
For Widdicombe to say that this is all about publishing MPs addresses is complete rubbish. Who cares about the addresses? What I am concerned about is whether MPs actually benefit substantially from their expenses - and it's very clear that they do.
To use her example - who decides if retiling a kitchen is 'betterment' or maintenance, and what procedures are there for audit and inspection? None whatsoever. These are untaxed benefits. So all this crap about MPs being paid a pittance is the usual dissimulation.
The lady doth protest too much.
Widdecombe is the sort of MP who will command a strong following in a safe Conservative seat, but could never win over and influence voters in the sort of seats that have to be won. She reminds me of so many members in our Conservative Association who are comfortable in their own milieu but totally lost when it comes to winning over floating voters.
She let's herself be wound up over a rather straightforward matter. She is unable to handle Andrew Pierce's rudeness because her hubris gets the better of her. She is low calibre material, and I am sure there are plenty of people in Maidstone and/or the Weald who could have made a better fist of the job, but fortunately for them, they had better things to do with their lives.
Sorry, folks. I booked that Widdecombe 1 - Slimy Journos 0.
Alex - I been meaning to mention for quite some time that I find you rather second-rate.
You seem not to appreciate the cunning of the skilled debater. Pretended, theatrical anger goes quite some way to destabilise an opponent. Both of the men at the table were visibly shocked.
Your contributions are almost always of low calibre and full of incompetently disguised malice.
This was freaky. I headed over to telegraph tv on thursday because our beloved Iain didn't put 'Ging-er Confronted' up for ages.
I was listening on headphones and Widders started screaming!
Despite the fact that I'm a hardcore tory I am in essence a gentle soul and Widders played havoc with my nerves.
So I appeal to everyone on 'Right On' to take Iain Dale's approach when angry: Go slighly red and speak slightly slower and slightly louder. I think it works best.
Alex will never regain his self-esteem after that battering from Verity!
Don't worry Mr Weasel. My self-esteem turns on far weightier matters than Verity's opinions.
"Alex - I been meaning to mention for quite some time that I find you rather second-rate. "
If Alex is second rate where does that leave you?
The guy's a clown.
He moderates....his tone and....interupts his....speech....for some...unknown reason. He sounds...like a...patronising idiot... who'd like to be on TV....but clearly....has not got...the ability.
Yes, Alex. I was being ironic and humorous in my inimitable way. But why call me Mr Weasel? Is it some obscure joke? :)
Widdy clearly thinks that there has been misreporting of the expenses fiasco.
It is very important to know if “betterment” of kitchens is to be paid out of an M.P.’s pocket.
It is also important to know if there is a real risk when M.P.’s private addresses are published. I think that the proper way to test this is to make sure that all journalists who report on Parliament, their editors and proprietors have their private addresses published, because clearly they believe that there is no risk if this is done.
In fact, we can start on this blog. Would you like to give us your address, Iain?
Now we’ve had a proper think about the whole issue, I have to say that I think M.P.’s are hopelessly out of touch about this. Other people simply do not get second homes paid for by their employers and all these expenses look like an overhang from the 1950s, when deference ruled.
M.P’s have imposed countless burdens upon middle class people, including laws to criminalise them, if they fail to follow strict rules. M.P.’s have considered themselves to be exempt from this. At the same time they have been handing their power over to Brussels. The time is coming when they will have to kow tow, like the rest of us. That time will be very soon.
As for the newspapers, I have written this many times on this blog but it bears repeating. Their privileged position will only last as long as they are useful to those in power. As long as their circulations hold up. After circulation falls then journalists are in for a big shock. They too will have to start obeying the same laws as the rest of us.
If I was an M.P., now, I would start pointing out the current attempts of the press to deprive ordinary people of their rights to sue for libel under Conditional Fee Agreements. These are the agreements which mean that a poor person who is libelled does not have to pay legal fees. These agreements are under attack. Ostensibly because the national press says they are costing them too much but actually because they are the only remedy for people who have no money and who have been libelled in the press, there being no Legal Aid for libel. The public interest defence, which was developed by the courts to assist newspapers, cannot easily be used against libelled private individuals.
Asquith, Apologies, I thought you were someone else. Sorry.
I hate to make common cause (non-capitalised) with M Hristov, but 100% agree about contingency fees.
For one thing, the taxpayer should not be supporting, by force, the quango Legal Aid.
The freewheeling American contingency system works fairly well, despite the inevitable vexacious cases. But those vexacious cases are at the attorneys' risk, not the taxpayers'.
Don't force the taxpayer to take a risk with his hard-earned money for no advantage to himself. Trust the privately compensated lawyers. They will sort out what won't fly.
I forgive you, Alex :)
Do I gather that Widders objects to people thinking that MPs are thieving lying scum? How quiotic.
M hristov: "I have written this many times on this blog but it bears repeating."
(Translation: Ahoy, down there, you proles!)
"Their [jouranalists'] privileged position will only last as long as they are useful to those in power."
And when precisely do you expect those in power no longer to need journalistic lackeys and running dogs to propagate their leaks and smears?
rupert tube :
The point is that newspaper journalists will lose their privileged position once circulation falls to a certain level.
The smears etc will be perpetrated on the succeeding media. Namely, the internet.
I am begining to wonder how new the appliances are in La Widdicombe's kitchen.
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