The Blog of
Nadine Dorries
Why I Did What I Did
Posted Monday, 25 May 2009 at 14:00

I have spent the last 48 hrs in bed. I told everyone it was a bad tummy, it wasn't, I had reached the point of stress induced physical exhaustion.

The nausea had soared to the point of physically debilitating me, and so I gave in.

Lying down was a mistake. Once I had done that, lifting my head from the pillow became a physical impossibility, for almost 24 hrs.

I felt as though Smeargate, my run in with the Daily Telegraph (DT), after I published their letter to me on my blog, the last few days along with all the usual MP and mother work, had morphed into a physical being and were collectively leaning over my bed, rubbing their hands together in glee and squealing "that's it, she's down!”

As always, I will qualify what I am about to say with the acknowledgment that I was as shocked and appalled as everyone else at the revelations of fraud and wrong-doing. Like everyone else, I am still reeling from the knowledge, that a sovereign system had allowed, enabled, and encouraged non-existent mortgages to be claimed for. The process of house flipping was as much news to me as everyone else. Frankly, even if I had used the ACA to buy a house, it is not something which would ever even occur to me to do, not in a million years.

My surgeries are full of people at their wits end. The redundant, the broken and the poor. I meet, see and talk to these people almost every single day.

I have been, at sometime or other, all of those people.

That is why I took their anger as read. I felt it too.

I believe it is right of the DT to bring this issue out into the open. I praise their exposure of fraud and mis-appropriation.

However, it is wrong to conflate the deadly serious with the mildly embarrassing and genuine administrative errors. By doing that you deem the truly innocent, wholly guilty, make it impossible for the public to understand where to direct their anger, create an atmosphere of chaos and insecurity, which in turn, threatens democracy itself.

Does the DT have an agenda other than the desire to perform a public service?

Why would they expose this fiasco at the start of an election campaign if the priority was not to de stabilise the main political parties and to drive votes towards the minority parties?

I cleave to my original substantive point. If it's in the name of the public good, do it all in one day. Get it all out there. One big explosive edition. Let the guilty be found, the mistakes be rectified and the innocent go about their lives free from the potential impending ducking stool.

Is there not something slightly hypocritical about the DT increasing its revenue by an estimated £1 million per day in the name of public good?

Whilst democracy teeters on the brink of collapse, the DT is laughing all the way to the bank.

You would never allow a business to freefall in the way we were allowing the mother of all Parliaments to spin out of control.

My colleagues, my innocent colleagues, were literally being made physically ill by the bullying process deployed by the DT, as part of the drip, profit, drip, profit technique.

If I had to use one word to describe any personal quality I possess, it is loyalty.

I would never betray a friend and I always instinctively, fiercely, protect those I care for. Seeing the innocent amongst my colleagues, from all political parties, on all sides of the house, suffer in this way and threading together what I saw with what I have explained above seriously worried me. When I heard two MPs discussing how very concerned everyone was about an MP who was ill and was being persued by the DT for an admin error, I worried too.

 I had no idea that the few words on my blog, written from a perspective of concern and care, would result in another 24 hrs of frenetic media or be quoted as the second item on the Today programme. I had only stated what was blindingly obvious to anyone and everyone who had been in Westminster that week.

I should mention at this point that I was 100% behind David Cameron's strong position of punishing the fraudsters. It has to be done. But the innocent needed to be cared for and protected too. David Cameron faces a huge challenge, to be the man who brings forward proposals which will bring about a new sense of security. the country needs to know it's safe in his hands. Only when people begin to feel secure again will calm be restored.

I didn't sleep at all on Friday night.

I knew that the following morning there was a chance I could be slaughtered in the papers.

That people may misinterpret my concern as an excuse for those who had committed serious fraud. Or that I was in some way excusing the ridiculous behaviour of someone who thought a second home for ducks was an appropriate use of tax payer’s money.

I was much relieved at first light that the Independent http://www.independent.co.uk leader had agreed with me, using the headline 'the witch hunt has to stop'.

The Archbishop of Canterbury had also written an article in the Times calling for 'the end of the ritual humiliation', and two of my favourite journalists Matthew Paris in the Times for whom I have the hugest admiration and respect and Danny Finkelstein, ditto, had written supporting my position in Matthew’s case, and me personally in Danny's. Thank you so much Danny ( I had read the book too!).

As well as waiting during the night on Friday to see if my career was in tatters, I also had to deal with the minor problem of the Barclay Brother’s use of global lawyers and the removal of my blog site on behalf of the Telegraph Group.

At 1am I felt as though I was in a very surreal place. This was just little me, and two of the richest men in the world who own a newspaper empire and can pretty much say what they want, when they want, to who they want, had, using their wealth and muscle, shut me down.

It was shortly after reading the Saturday morning press when realising that with the Archbishops comments, that at least I had God on my side, I began to vomit.

My whole-hearted apologies to Cara at Sky, who got the first audio clip.

My phone rang an hour ago. A very tearful, upset female MP, wrongly targeted by the DT. Her husband's company had received hate emails. The press were camped outside her house in a pack. Her very young son, unknowingly holding telephone conversations with journalists, even though he had told them mummy wasn't in. Her life and her family in bits, and in her case the DT have got it completely wrong. Decent people do not like to see the innocent victimised. I suspect this wont stop until June 5th, the day following the election. By which time much more harm than good may have been done.

She, one of the many good, is suffering as a result of the rotten minority.

I knew on Friday morning that I had walked into the eye of a storm. I also knew that in voicing concern for all but the immoral, corrupt fraudsters and the totally ridiculous, I would become a conduit for the anger which had yet to be earthed.

Never again must democracy be threatened or the innocent be victimised. A system is required which rewards in a fair way and is totally beyond corruption.

I finish on my initial point. If the Telegraph are doing this not for the advantage of minority parties, not to destabilise democracy, not to make themselves even wealthier, then handle it better. Leave the innocent alone and publish the guilty all on one day. Because if democracy is damaged as a result of a minority of fraudsters and crooks, we will all, in the long term,  be much worse off than we are today.

We may even see a return to the dark days when only the rich can afford to stand as an MP and as someone from a council estate, that for me would be the saddest day.

 

 
 
 
Rachel said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Glad you are back. I don't agree with everything you say, but admire you for having the strength to say it. If DC wants a more diverse group of MPs, he will need to accept that not everyone is going to behave like a Stepford wife. This whole issue has inspired me to join the Conservative Party - whilst there are some individuals who have behaved improperly many have not, and I think that DC has showed great leadership and decisiveness in his management of the whole situation. I have just finished reading 'Cameron on Cameron' and am very impressed with his vision for the future. Keep doing what you are doing Nadine, and stay strong.
 
 
David Worsfold said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
While I understand the personal stress this must be causing MPs and have sympathy for the many hardworking, honest MPs I know, I still do not understand why you are attacking the Daily Telegraph. Your plea for them to publish everything all at once is misplaced - Parliament should have done that months ago. See my own blog on this point http://blog.appgifs.org.uk/2009/05/mps-are-fast-losing-the-plot-i.html
 
 
skingers said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Good to see you are back up and recovering. I guess you touched a nerve on Brecqhou:( Any leverage politicians had on the fourth estate has almost gone. No hack is going to kowtow to a politician now and all are open season, not nice but true. So be brave and keep posting, the fifth estate (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fifth_Estate) will eventually vanquish the mainstream media who are haemorrhaging cash and are devoid of a valid business model. So get back in the saddle and get involved. Enjoy the blog...
 
 
Mark Elt said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
The problem with your central point remains the same Nadine. This is not some small minority of MPs, but a very large minority of MPs who were using public funds to top up their income. The small minority appears to be those who were committing out and out fraud. What I think is a real problem is the way that it looks like the 'political class' was complicit in this, unless you can name somebody who was campaiging vigorously for the sorts of changes now being proposed by David Cameron. The DT may be making hay, but I don't think they had any option but to publish details over a period of time. Firstly because of the practical issue of managing the information but also because there are so many peopel involved in this, digesting it all in a day would have been like eating an elephant. Whether you agree with what is happening or not, you all need to take what's coming to you and stop arguing.
 
 
Johnny Boy said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I must admit Nadine that MArk is spot on with this. If there is a poisonous atmosphere around parliament who is to blame for that? If duck houses hadnt been claimed for then there would be no reprecusions.
 
 
Malcolm Allen said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
There appears to be quite a number of rich millionaires already sitting in parliament at present.The reason people from council estates aren't elected now is because of the local party system where it's not what you know but who you know. This cleaning up of parliament will be a painful experience for some but only good can come out of it.I salute the Telegraph and what it has exposed and has done this country a great service.Perhaps if MPs had been a bit more responsible in their expenses claims and using tax payers money in such a cavalier fashion all this could have been avoided.
 
 
ian said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Welcome back Nadine. My advice, for what it's worth, would be to keep your head down and take some time out. Your arguments have been well made but, I suspect, won't make much headway in the current febrile atmoshere. Good luck.
 
 
Nigel Allery said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Generally if an MP has been ethical in their claims, why worry? If the DT have it wrong then the Party Machine will listen, and in due course the electorate. I think stress is the feeling a soldier gets in Afganistan the night before going on a mission he may not come back from. Or the time between tests and results for a cancer sufferer. Perhaps the DT is doing reform a great favour. I hope the Commons remember how this feels for many years to come and that the memory drives reform forwards.
 
 
Emma said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Finally, someone with common sense and compassion.
 
 
Geoff said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Welcome back. I'm still puzzled why the Telegraph, in the midst of their campaign trumpeting freedom of information, immediately reached for their lawyers at the first hint of criticism and suppressed your blog, denying you the same freedom to publish that they demand for themselves. It doesn't reflect well on them.
 
 
Letters From A Tory said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
"Never again must democracy be threatened or the innocent be victimised." Always a tough one. Even if the Telegraph had only nailed the 100% unmistakably guilty individuals and left everyone else alone, the reputation of MPs in general would still have suffered and a certain amount of abuse would be inevitable.
 
 
Sally said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I'm glad you are back.Some of the blogs are written and dominated by testosterone fuelled men who really need to get away from the screen and experience a bit of life. It makes uncomfortable reading for women and frankly, there are a couple I will never visit again. Men really are from Mars. Nice to read a viewpoint which is both compassionate and reasoned.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
it is a sad fact that when something like this happens, evereyone is tarred with the same brush. Keep your chin up.
 
 
Jon said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Can you clarify your comment that only the rich will be able to stand as an MP? If you are referring to the costs involved in actually getting elected in the first place then I'm sure you are right - you either have to be rich or have the backing of a major party. However once elected MPs earn a minimum of £64,766 per year which is around 3 times the average salary in this country and easily enough to fund a comfortable lifestyle. I believe you are even amongst the few people in this country still to get a final salary pension.
 
 
John said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
The Independent makes interesting reading today. I think it is a fact that the more intelligent the audience, the more reasoned the point of view. The MAil and the Sun cater to the mass audience. For the first time in 27 years I am going to 'flip' newspapers!
 
 
James said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I think we need an explanation of who is in the photos!
 
 
Edward said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
It's strange that someone who's blog (and it's sidebar with links to Guido, Redwood, Hannan et al) and politics seem to be on the more Right of the party should complain about the way capitalism works.
 
 
mark said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Yyou are right. It is wrong to drip feed this 'news' and the Telegraph do not have a moral case for doing so. One edition stating all perceived questionable claims would suffice. Plus, some of us are bored with hearing about it, and becoming anaesthetised to the so called scandal of it all. The one saving grace is that no-one really likes journalists anyway, and there is an irony, which is that as a collective, they are not above moral question themselves. And the system did allow for this, which whilst that does not make questionable claims more credible, does at least give some justification albeit slim for some of the more amusing claims. Of course, the claims for non existent mortgages and flipping homes etc are just not acceptable. All that said, this period in time serves to highlight the problems with our whole political system, and will hopefully drag it into the modern age with radical reform. However, that remains to be seen.. Nice to see you have this new comment entry where it is possible to see what we type! Good things do come from the flames I guess. I wish you well, and feel sad that you became some sort of scapegoat for defending the (perceived) indefensible, especially considering some of the sanctimonious witterings that are offered in our daily newspapers on occasion. Only in our crazy world, could the newpapers ever be seen to hold the moral high ground...!
 
 
Nigel Hastilow said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I can't believe the Telegraph, of all papers, wants to gag democratic debate. See http://nigelhastilow.blogspot.com/
 
 
Pauline said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Nadine, Good to see your blog back. I wholeheartedly agree with your comment:- I would never betray a friend and I always instinctively, fiercely, protect those I care for. However, not everyone does, stay strong, head high and good luck.
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
What strikes me is how much right-wing bloggers have contributed to the media frenzy. They seem to consider themselves part of the Fourth Estate - as if they have more in common with press barons like the Barclay brothers than with any MP whatsoever. In fact, few defended you - and even then not much - simply as a fellow blogger being attacked by The Telegraph's lawyers for speaking her mind. The only possible reason for such lack of sympathy is because you are an elected MP. If the Fifth Estate - which the mainstream media tells us is so overwhelmingly right-wing that Draper and McBride were reduced to planning childish smears out of sheer frustration - hates MPs that much, yet believes, we must assume, in democracy, then can we expect the likes of Guido Fawkes to do the decent thing and stand for Parliament? Because if they don't we will get licence-fee-troughers like Esther Rantzen who will further degrade the political system. I made a suggestion elsewhere that if this frenzy leads to a sudden general election, it would serve the entire spectrum of opinion-pushers right if just before the Commons breaks up, it were to pass an Act abolishing the BBC licence fee. Naturally, it would come to be known as the F*** You Bill! Power without responsibility has always been the apt deion of the traditional mass media. Now that elected politicians - with you as an honourable exception - are running so scared of the press and TV, it seems the bloggers have chosen this position for themselves, too, the cowards.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Welcome back, although I often don't agree with all you say, you bring some individuality to politics which is sadly lacking. In years to come I suspect "The expenses issue scandal" will be seen as the straw that broke the camel's back in removing the elitist culture from Whitehall. Sorry about the mixed metaphors. Whilst I am happy to see the current system under attack, the effect on individuals can be devastating especially if there is a macho culture (which is often now from women as much as men). Stress and depression can be helped and as one who has suffered, I'd encourage seeking assistance. For some (not all) medication may help - it's an illness just as much as say diabeties. I have put this as an anonymous comment as I work in the public sector and debate from employees is not encouraged!
 
 
Pauline said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Good to see you back. good luck.
 
 
BOF2BS said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Yes glad you're back - agree with James's photo's comment and to be honest this new version is a bit pink for me! I'm in the group who don't necessarily agree with everything you say/post BUT who do believe you have a right to say it . I also appreciate your candour. I do think the political initiative has been, for too long, in the Barclay's hands and continuing attempts to retrieve it are necessary and were overdue. Yours was one of the first in my opinion. They are 75 so who knows how long they will continue to be active & whilst it appears to be relatively common for the sons/daughters of such owners to inherit the earth recent precedents are somewhat underwhelming - if they are all as financially biased as detailed elsewhere then perhaps the group might change hands again in the not too distant future - who knowes? DC doing well on the initiative front - long may it continue.
 
 
Alison Crouch said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I too have been shocked at the right wing blogs. I am not really sure if it is because they are dominated by men, or because they are dominated by heartless, aggressive men. Thank Goodness your site is back up because at least normal women have somewhere to go again. x
 
 
Margaret said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Love the Pink. Please make this site girls only!
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
You complain about the Daily Telegraph but surely that newspaper, in a capitalist society, has every right to maximise its profit. By using the MPs' expenses scandal as a story over many issues, it is doing the public a great service by ensuring it is not quickly forgotten. As a result something rather than nothing will be done to fix the problem. Just great for democracy in the long run, and ultimately for you too. Who said 'No pain no gain'? You complain about all MPs - the fraudulent, the administratively incompetent and the honest - all being tarred with the same brush. But that's just how politicians treat the electorate. Politicians segment us into 'pensioners', 'women', 'muslims', 'blacks', etc and assume that everyone in those groupings thinks the same. We don't, we are individuals. So MPs should not complain when the media treats them the same way as politicians treat the voters. You (Matthew Parris and the Times Editorial column) complain that MPs' salaries are too low. IMO, they are not. An MP is told by the party which way to vote and (sadly) has close to no influence over anything. Much decision making is now in the European Union, not in Westminister, so Parliament and each MP's role is much diminished compared to years past. Better pay does not equal better candidates. There are some superb workers earning very little, e.g many nurses, and some people on extremely high remuneration who are walking disasters, e.g. many bankers. The average wage for an MP doing the basic MP's job is just fine, without one of the most generous pension schemes in the country, please.
 
 
James Sutherland said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
The Telegraph hardly needs a 'moral case' for serialising this information - it's quite standard for newspapers when running any item too big to be contained in a single edition. Doing this allows them to focus on and properly investigate each subject, rather than rushing to cram everything into one encyclopaedia of corruption which wouldn't fit through their readers' letterboxes! I'm with 'Anonymous' above: the notion that paying MPs 'only' three times the average salary (plus gold-plated pension) is somehow insufficient seems absurd, not to mention the lack of relevance.
 
 
elizabeth said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I am sorry to hear that you aren't feeling well and I also admire your sense of perspective. However I find Joan Smith's hypocrisy somewhat galling in her column in the Guardian today ("I am sick of my country and this hysteria over MPs"). It's OK for her to "monster" members of the Royal Family in her Guardian columns, and to target them "of a degree of vitrioli disproportionate to any offence they are deemed to have caused", but how dare others humiliate decent people like her MP husband and his ilk. To get some sense of Ms Smith's hypocrisy (and her stupidity), here she is on Princes William and Harry: "the character and behaviour of Princes William and Harry would render them almost comically unsuitable candidates for the role of head of state. They are disqualified by their snobbery, their sense of entitlement, and their spendthrift attitude to public money – not to mention the fact that they're not very bright". Here's another Joan Smith anti-Royal Family diatribe: "All the bronze statues in the world cannot conceal the fact that the nation's favourite granny was an unashamed bigot". As the saying goes, "people who live in chateaux, shouldn't throw tomateaux". I wish Ms Smith would practise what she preaches!
 
 
Alex said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
"You would never allow a business to freefall in the way we were allowing the mother of all Parliaments to spin out of control." Oh yes we would, and it was called Enron, Coloroll, British & Commonwealth, Polly Peck. When dodgy accounting is shown up, we expect companies to go to the wall.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Nadine, you're seeing conspiratorial factors when there are but financial ones. >Why would they expose this fiasco at the start of an election campaign if >the priority was not to de stabilise the main political parties and to >drive votes towards the minority parties? Because this is when the Telegraph will get the most attention for running the stories. >If it's in the name of the public good, do it all in one day. Get it all >out there. One big explosive edition. Let the guilty be found, the mistakes >be rectified and the innocent go about their lives free from the potential >impending ducking stool. The Telegraph would have stopped, but sales on the papers were too good. It is in the public good., And there is a profit motive. The two are not incompatible. Also, put everyone out on one day and how much of it will be lost? >Is there not something slightly hypocritical about the DT increasing its >revenue by an estimated £1 million per day in the name of public good? No. Doctors work for the public good and get paid for it. So, indeed, should MPs. >Whilst democracy teeters on the brink of collapse, the DT is laughing all >the way to the bank. The Telegraph pointed at it. The MPs did it. This is not a small minority. This is half. >You would never allow a business to freefall in the way we were allowing >the mother of all Parliaments to spin out of control. Woolworths? Zavvi? >We may even see a return to the dark days when only the rich can afford to >stand as an MP and as someone from a council estate, that for me would be >the saddest day. Absolute nonsense. It's the rich which (should have at least) take a pay cut to become an MP. For poorer people, they take a massive pay rise.
 
 
Mike H said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
It's good to have you back online - and I hope you're OK. Your old flak jacket must be in tatters after the last few days, so get yourself a new one before you go into battle again. ;-) This new blog is a *big* improvement over the old one... Permalinks! An easily accessible archive! A sensibly sized comment box! And it's all thanks to the Telegraph and the Barclay brothers - or would it have gone live today anyway? I wonder if it supports paragraph breaks? That would be a real treat.
 
 
witteringsfromwitney said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Nadine, Pleased to see you have recovered from your 'illness' - you have been missed. Regret that I cannot agree with your 'drip drip' verdict on the expenses, as Ben Brogan explained on QT there is a lot of work involved checking and cross-checking etc. Also I do not see the point you make about other, innocent MPs, being 'traumatised' by this. If an MP has 'behaved', what is there to worry about? Anyway, lets agree to disagree if necessary.
 
 
Katriona said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
If any of your friends are right wing bloggers, I would wipe them off your Christmas card list RIGHT NOW. I will never read ConservativeHome or Guido, again. I second Margaret, lets make this a girls only site. At least we know how to treat other human beings. I'm not at all surprised to hear you were sick. It made me sick reading the awful articles and comments on the right wing blogs. Not so long ago I thought I may stop my daily paper and read everything online. Following the awful way the blogs behaved last week, that wont be happening any time soon. Don't ever be tempted to change your style to slip along with the others. Your humanity and softness of tone is a refreshing relief.
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Honestly, where is this great example of journalistic effort from the Daily Telegraph? Did they investigate and uncover something that was hidden? Did they hell. Whether bought or just handed over, they simply took a disk of information and made a profitable soap opera out of it. I heard David Attenborough on Radio 4 on Saturday telling how easy it was to get(public) money out of the BBC in the old days to do pretty much as he pleased. We are told it is no longer "trebles all round" but who knows? 92,000 a year for a newsreader? As an institution, the BBC is now obviously far more powerful than Parliament, and that ought to disturb us. And what should disturb us even more is that today's triumphant mass media only recently allowed the GOVERNMENT to hand over billions of pounds to its banker friends. Where was the day after day support campaign for those MPs who questioned the principle of a bailout and wanted to ask a few questions first? Oh, I remember, now. They were too busy making Robert Peston (any advance on 92,000?) into an expert.
 
 
Essex man said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Some of the right wing blogs were done up like a kipper over the weekend. Egos are easy things to feed.
 
 
The Wilted Rose said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
A thought-provoking article, Nadine, and very well written, as always. I remember "telling" at a polling station in a Catholic area of Crewe on just over a year ago, and seeing the anger and fury in voters' eyes as they went in to vote. Many were lifetime Labour voters who had been pushed over the edge into doing the (once) unthinkable, voting Conservative, not just on the economy but primarily because Harriet Harman stealthily whipped Labour MPs into voting to maintain abortion at 24 weeks. The anger and fury in voters' eyes over MPs' expenses is sometimes brutal, but is understandable (given the financial and labour-market problems many voters are currently experiencing), and the backlash has certainly had its toll on many innocent MPs too, emotionally and psychologically. It will take a long time, though, to restore the trust between many voters and their MPs.
 
 
ed said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Storming response Nadine. Pink adds a touch of chutzpah to it as well ;-).
 
 
The Vicar said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
It was obvious on Friday morning, maybe not to all, that you had adopted a Christian perspective. Sometimes we have to sustain attack when adhering to principles of love and care for others. I think your illness may have been as a result of this, rather than exhaustion.
 
 
Hastings Tory said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Despite being an avid reader of Conservative Home, I confess to having not read your blog before, I will do so from now on. The Daily Telegraph will no longer be purchased by me as I am deeply concerned about their tactics. How can they believe in the freedom of the press and then try to gag someone who give a different opinion to theirs. They should be ashamed. This has all got seriously out of control and is hurting innocent people. Nadine I used to live in Barton le Clay and I would have been proud for you to have been my MP. By continuing with these "exposes" they seem to have their own agenda to promote certain fringe parties. All they are doing is being the leading party in the ruination of the world's leading democracy.
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
From wikipedia on John Birt "Birt's promotion to Director-General in 1992 caused immediate controversy. On top of all the internal opposition, it was then revealed that, though Director-General, Birt was being employed on a freelance consultancy basis in order to write off numerous personal expenses against tax, including "secretarial services" from his wife. While perfectly acceptable in the private sector, such practices were considered unacceptable in a Director-General of the BBC. Under political and public pressure, Birt became a BBC employee." (Hope the BBC lawyers try to take down your blog for reminding them about this!) Had Margaret Thatcher been courageous enough to prise the BBC loose from the public teat, instead of trying to reform it by appointing Birt, perhaps the subsequent exodus of licence-fee troughing journalists who headed for the New Labour government trough five years later might not have happened. (Why don't the right-wing bloggers consider BBC journalists to be troughing from the public purse?) From Robert Aitken's brilliant book, Can we trust the BBC? "Lance Price, BBC political correspondent, left to join the No. 10 press office under Alastair Campbell. Subsequently moved to work for the Labour party but has now moved back into broadcasting. Martin Sixsmith, a BBC foreign correspondent who went to work as a government press officer. Eventually became embroiled in the 'Jo Moore saga' before acrimoniously quitting government employ. Tom Kelly, former Newsnight producer who rose to be head of news in Northern Ireland before joining the No.10 press office and then became Tony Blair's official spokesman. Ed Richards, head of BBC strategy under John Birt, left to work for Gordon Brown before joining the Downing Street Policy Unit. Now works for Ofcom, the communications regulator. Bill Bush, head of the BBC's Political Research Unit, left to join the research unit at No.10. According to a Guardian writer: 'This was a man who had access to the most sensitive information the BBC has on MPs, their parties, and the government. His value to the Labour Party can hardly be overestimated'. Catherine Rimmer, a former colleague of Bill Bush in the BBC Political Research Unit, who also moved to the Downing Street Research Unit. John Birt, formerly the BBC's Director-General, now Lord Birt. He became special adviser to the Prime Minister (Blair at time of publication). Don Brind, former BBC political correspondent, moved over to become a Labour Party press officer. Sarah Hunter, formerly worked in the BBC's policy directorate, joined Downing Street as sports and culture adviser in 2001. Joy Johnson, formerly the BBC's news editor at Westminster, who joined Labour's press office." That's just the backroom staff. Ben Bradshaw, Chris Bryant, Celia Barlow, James Purnell, Ken McIntosh - all became MPs, all were former BBC staffers. Are we supposed to believe that the way some MPs came to use their Additional Costs Allowance has come as a such a shock to all these people courtesy of the Daily Telegraph? What was that line in Casablanca? Thank you, google. Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds? Captain Renault: I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here! [a croupier hands Renault a pile of money] Croupier: Your winnings, sir. Captain Renault: [sotto voce] Oh, thank you very much. [aloud] Captain Renault: Everybody out at once! No GOVERNMENT, either current Labour (obviously), or future Tory (far too scared) can now imagine itself tackling the awesome power of the BBC (which, because it is so vast, underpins the hypocrisy, irresponsibility, and arrogance of all the mainstream media). However, MPs, of all parties, now seem to have nothing to lose. Parliament is supreme. It can't take the Royal Charter away, but it can abolish the licence fee. That would save 3 billion a year, most of it from poor people. It would throw the press and broadcast media into turmoil, so that they would be far less able to influence a general election - though they could report it. It's the most democratic thing to do.
 
 
Harry said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I needed to read that twice for it to sink in. As there is no Conservative equivalent to the BBC, it would appear to be a logical move for the next Conservative government to remove the licence fee and thereby weaken the nursery bed of Labour. The Conservative party appear to have no intention to do any such thing. Why not?
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Don't ever let those b****rs get you down again. Interesting how much more understanding of the debacle the left wing press are compared to the right. Theresa May once described Conservatives as the nasty party. It isn't the party, it's the press. Inde and Guardian take a far more prgmatic view, whilst Tel graph and Mail search for blood.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Due to severe illness I lost my job which I loved, I found myself for the first time in the DWP benefit system. It took three years for me to get the benefits I was entitled to, not before causing me to have a mental break down. I had always paid my way, never once did I claim any expenses which I had not already paid out for. What you have experienced is sadly the norm for some people who find themselves having to claim benefits. I am sorry for your pain, but you should be very careful of what you say and the way you and your party policies effect hard working honest folk. There is no witch hunt, it's the truth people seek, that's all. It;s sad that it has taken a news paper to pass the truth on, perhaps it should have been the politicians job!
 
 
councillor gill cartwright said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Glad to see you back, Nadine.
 
 
Benny Austwick said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
They may have increased their revenue with this latest publication of scandal but once they've run out of material, their usual Tory fanbase will have deserted them. I've made the big switch to The Times.
 
 
Tom FD said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Hooray for permalinks!!!
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I am a supporter, but will you please just shut up? Because of your bleatings, there is a real danger that we may lose your seat to an independent.
 
 
Dan said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I'm glad you're blog is back although I don't always agree with what you have to say. On this issue I don't think you are necessarily correct. The Telegraph (albeit by their own admission) have had many journalists working on this story checking what was on the disk - it is already apparent that they have not got it right all the time and some of the not so guilty have been made to look worse than they should have been. So either: a) They should have released it all in one go - with little or no fact checking. b) They should be releasing it much more slowly 0- but after ensuring that everything is correct. As a business attempting to make money I presume they are ignoring both a and b and trying to steer a middle ground that doesn't go too far either way whilst maximising the potential return. At the end of the day the Parliamentary authorities have had all of the necessary paperwork for much longer than the Telegraph and therefore could have spiked the story by publishing everything once it became apparent the story was going to break anyway.
 
 
Peter Manfield said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
I think that the DT is simply reporting raw information with little regard for the consequences and accuracy. However, it is surely the job of the rest of the media especially the broadcast media to put ever thing into perspective. The main offenders such as Hoon, Darling and Balls seem to have got away with it while the MPs that have simply fallen foul of a stupid and bizarre system are being hauled through the coals.
 
 
Richard Dale said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Welcome back. Having initially supported the Daily Telegraph, I was furious at the Telegraph's treatment of you and some of the others (on all sides - why do I have to say that, as if partisan politics is assumed in every opinion?). If I still lived in Mid Beds or if I paid for th Telegraph I would give you my support in a more practical way, but I can only wish you the best of luck.
 
 
David Boycott said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Quite agree it should all have been published quickly. This is the fairest means of dealing with it. If Gordon Brown and Michael Martin had an ounce of common sense between them, it would have been accomplished on day two, the public would be fully informed and the Telegraph would be 300k poorer!
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Harry - all the major parties have too much invested in the system. By system, I mean to include the current media situation as well - which I would describe in a shorthand way like this: a monster publicly-funded multimedia BBC (which cross-promotes shamelessly, distorts the market, and is culturally left/liberal/progressive/self-regarding/smug because it sucks on the public teat). Then there is the Guardian Media Group/Scott Trust which is an unusual institution. In Holland, where I lived for a few years, a lot of the media is owned by Stichtings (not-for-profit trusts). This form appears democratic but frequently degenerates into something particularly horrid, when journalists become trustees. The main feature is that they can be 'all things to all men'. They conserve profits (obviously), but they also use this not-for-profit tag to pretend to be 'public service'organisations. The Guardian is right now, apparently, looking to share in the licence-fee for this reason. Between these two, and they are very close (almost all BBC recruitment is via Guardian Media, journalists move between them and/or moonlight)they exert a bias which no party leader can afford not to come to terms with. The BBC/Guardian nexus depends on public money, and is so powerful that - like the bankers - it will always get it.....unless MPs, who collectively are sovereign, re-assert their power - not by following public opinion (as relayed to them via the publicly-funded BBC) but by acting, and acting decisively. Chop the BBC's funding, and howl at Gordon Brown for an immediate general election. The issue which those (of all parties) who have the guts to stand again ought, perhaps, to hammer home might go something like this: when the new parliament convenes, we will go into permanent session to enquire into the banking bailout, we will hear expert testimony until we uncover and understand the real cause of the crisis and we will agree - as a new parliament with no secret backroom deals - on a national economic recovery strategy. We will not fight against currency speculation - if bankers try to regain control that way - but we might demand they appear before the House on live TV to be questioned. The powers of parliament must be wielded by a post-election House as in the days of Cromwell.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Tuesday, 26 May 2009
The Telegraph have performed a public service, if the system was rotten it needed a surveyors report. I'm sorry, but with the greatest respect, for you to never have heard of flipping is virtualy unbelievable, even I have long before this month and I am not in Parliament at the taxpayers expense. MP's have a job to do, plenty of people work harder for less. Its a choice you make and £65k is plenty of pay not bad pay. Some MP's have been caught out and have to take the consequences, those that haven't have to quit whingeing and make capital out of the fact.
 
 
Chris Neal said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
Yours a Kingdom view on this sorry situation Care and compassion shown after deep contemplation The long knives though are drawn, the enemy attacks through the furious pens of a hundred hard hacks The Barons then conspire to stifle your voice You can't answer, we can't listen they've denied us the choice as the saga unfolds the attack will surely lose pace the unscrupulous gone and a flawed system replaced the stress induced shutdown meant 48 hours in bed for having the courage to say what had to be said Showing love to one another may have affected your health but in Heaven Nadine you're storing up wealth well done
 
 
Mike said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
Most comments here seem to be in your favour or critical of the Telegraph. How many are you suppresing? I suspect a great number.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
People are at their wit's end. Britain has no reliable employers left outside London. I don't think people want to be angry with MPs, but billions have been handed over to vampire bankers who are, much more than any newspaper proprietors, laughing all the way to the Carribbean. The DT has done not much more than point the finger, and the anger has fallen almost randomly on MPs. The last 6 Prime Ministers are almost entirely to blame, not just for the expenses regime, but the state of the country, they having far more power than any backbencher. Anger will find a target eventually, even if it is the wrong one. Very few Iraqis or Afghans were responsible for 9/11, but as I say, anger must be served. All MP's live with the possibility of losing their seats to a fickly and illogical electorate. It is just a good thing that changing the representative of up to 70% of constituencies in the coming landslide will mean a huge reduction in the number of basically criminal MPs in the house. This will make 1997 look like a small vote for change.
 
 
Keith Elliott said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
I am not a Conservative voter, but have respect for you and many Tory MP's as well as many MP's from other parties. Equally, I am glad the Telegraph has exposed the corrupt use of ACA by some MP's but deplore the way it is dragging the whole political process through the mire, day after day. Well done for standing up to them, and good luck. I still hope some good can come out of all this, but that won't be possible if all MP's are tarnished by the broad brush of scandal.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
*stands and applauds* Welcome back girl. Good to see you mention hypocrisy. It's the elephant in the room. There are MPs who should be in court by now but who have suffered nothing more than a few days of uncomfortable headlines. The rest of you are being tarred with the same brush. That's not to say some of you weren't, at best, naive (and at worst unethical). We get the government we deserve, so they say. Maybe a Parliament full of Esther Rantzens and that blond fella from Dollar is exactly what the Britains-Got-Talent generation deserves! By the way have you considered "I don't always agree with what she says" Anon as a strap line?
 
 
Adam said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
I've enjoyed reading your blog and hope to continue to do so. As someone whose political views (left and libertarian) are not represented by any major political party, I've opted for the ideological diversity route. But your insistence that the DT (a paper whose editorial ethos I have always despised) should reveal all in one day is somewhat over simplistic, surely. The revelations of disgraceful, opportunistic and it appears downright illegal behaviour perpetrated by many of our MPs to be gleaned from the expenses/allowances records a) would fill a book and b) are so "many layered" that a single revelation would not be possible. Take the issue of claiming tax advice on expenses. A different issue to duck houses and moats (which have an almost Pythonesque absurdity about them), and, I would suggest, a different revelation with massively different implications. But keep blogging, I'll keep reading, and if enough of us with diverse political ideologies can keep hammering away, maybe we can make that democracy thing less of an illusion :-)
 
 
Stephen Wigmore said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
Good Luck Nadine. I agree with you entirely. This furore will calm down eventually and then reasoned discernment of who is guilty and who is innocent will resurface. Until then don't let the pressure wear you down. Best Wishes.
 
 
Ian Mangles said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
These MP's that are within the rules but are paying the money back worry me... Either they believe what they did was morally wrong, so to make up for it they are refunding the money - in which case they have no moral authority to be involved in the governance of the country. Or they believe they have done nothing wrong, but are too weak to defend their moral stance and their principles, so are paying the money back anyway - in which case they lack the principles required to be involved in the governance of the country. Either way, it's their own fault. Why should we feel pity for them?
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
It seems as though Nadine has acquired a fair few friends who don't have anything in common with her party politics. I'm another. It also looks as though this terrible demonstration of the power-without-responsibility of the mass media and its effect on democracy has, to some extent, begun to be recognised here. But there is no chance of a general election. Why? Because everyone is scared of the consequences. But the consequence of Parliament staggering on for another year is the further erosion of democracy through the continuing dripping venom of the irresponsible mass media. Campaign for an immediate general election, Nadine, no matter what the results of the European elections. Trust in the democratic process has been corroded, and the only beneficiaries of any delay will be the organs of the mass media, which already dominate the calculations of all the party leaders. While Cameron will make use of a year to invent "reforms" that are acceptable to our media consensus, "general election now!", "Parliament is supreme!", and "House Investigation of Bailout Treachery!" would be far better issues for a backbench MP, especially a Conservative one, to be involved with.
 
 
StephenPaterson said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
Neither journalism nor politics works like that, I’m afraid. I have been an elected representative on a council for many years and a journalist for many more. The Telegraph may have received the data as a package but many of its resulting stories will have required a degree of investigation, and there is in any case a limit to the amount of information the public can be expected to digest all in one go. Besides which, you are assuming a consensus on what is ‘deadly serious’ and what isn’t. What is legal and what isn’t is determined by the lawmakers, including the MPs themselves. One of my predecessors on the council on which I served also served on another local authority. It was discovered he ‘double claimed’ travel allowances to some meetings from both authorities, on one occasion claiming he had used the larger of two cars his family owned when he had in fact used the smaller, thus claiming a larger mileage allowance. The figures involved in his case were tiny – as I remember it (we are going back to around 1980) less than £50 between them. But they were frauds, the evidence was there and the police were called in. He made the tragic mistake of opting for Crown Court trial but was found guilty by a jury and imprisoned, all at vast expense to the public. Obviously he lost his membership of both authorities, and there was talk of him losing his pension. An elderly man, unlikely to harm the public, I remember feeling as sad for him as he was led down from the dock as I felt angry at the disproportion and waste involved in it all. In the private sector, such a sum would have been forgotten, and he would have escaped at worst with a rap over the knuckles from his boss. So although I have met both Anthony Steen and Douglas Hogg, and am a great admirer of the first for his work on human trafficking and the second for his opposition to the Iraq war, when I see £87,000 spent on Anthony’s garden and £10,000pa on Douglas’s caretaker (I’ll accept his word it wasn’t for his famous moat), These payments were undoubtedly ‘legal’. Exactly how big to they have to be to constitute “deadly serious”? Some of the trivia is also interesting neither because of the money nor any deviation from the system. The 88p for Jacqui Smith’s bathplug, for example, sounds like a perfectly legitimate item required for a second home, but tells one an awful lot about the character of the Home Secretary making the claim, as well as the system (as it would very likely be cheaper to pay a small monthly amount to cover such trivia than to process each claim). But worse, far worse, than the revelations themselves is the incompetent way Parliament has dealt with this matter – the battle against disclosure in the courts, the sanitisation process as the documents progress towards their final bowdlerised release, and, of course, the dramatic over-reaction of the establishment. It is unreasonable, for example, to make no allowance whatsoever to MPs newly elected from the provinces for furniture. It is, furthermore, ridiculous to create yet another quango to be an ‘independent’ body to handle MPs allowances, thus giving the message that we are to be governed by those incapable of governing themselves. The fact is that MPs, apart from a tiny number, have evidently had no chance to self-regulate to date (apart, obviously, from their own individual claims) due to the lack of transparency.
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
Good. Another real person on the thread. But as both a politician and a journalist, isn't the threat to democracy and the overweening power of the mass media more troubling than the pettiness of most of these accusations? The failure of that dominant power - the media - to do anything to halt the bankers' bailout, will cost all of us far more, surely?
 
 
Mike H said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
@ Democrat - The power of the mass media only exists because so many people are unable or unwilling to question what they are told. In the absence of any critical analysis on the part of the reader, the media's preachings become a form of group-think. In that sense, I agree it's troubling.
 
 
Adam said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
Is not the power of the mass media (old media) also in part due to the continued unwillingness to recognise that the unregulated free market creates disproportionate centres of power. Corporocracy as the death of the ideal of democracy? In a free market environment, the DT is simply doing what the beast does... seizing the opportunity to grow sales and expand its powerbase. As a business, what obligations, other than legal ones, does it have? The revolutionary in me would see them all dismantled and decentralised, from the media moguls to Microsoft (first against the wall), though the realist is another matter ... :-) But if we allow a climate in which corporations of any colour can acquire this degree of power and influence, why the surprise when they exploit it? "Is there not something slightly hypocritical about the DT increasing its revenue by an estimated £1 million per day in the name of public good?" It's within the rules. Media sells to its demography. They have a vested interest in bypassing critical analysis, simply by publishing stories that already appeal to the bias and prejudice of that demography. Let's not pretend moral outrage when a business acts to expand its bottom line, any more than when the predator kills its prey.
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
I see you're a solid Darwinian materialist then,Adam. The following was written in 1984 by a former Fleet Street sub-editor (and former Australian sunday newspaper editor and press officer to the opposition leader in the New South Wales Parliament). "Each day the words are multiplied to represent even less truthfully what is true today; because what was true yesterday has already changed and must be redefined, redescribed, and re-reported. The jargon, ciphers, graphics, illustrations, lists, discussions, meetings, agendas, conferences, talks and useless information posing as news and informed opinion, every bit of it based on someone's likes and dislikes, on their unhappiness,pours out in an appalling torrent from the printed pages, mailboxes, electronic screens, magnetic speakers, and the multiple banks of barren, senseless brains behind them. Little does the super-rational mind realise that this gigantic descending stream is a repeat in a different time and a different medium of the deluge that wiped out the Ancient World; a modern flood of blind ignorance that will destroy all that man thought was true but was not the truth." Nineteen eighty-four. That's twenty-five years ago. Before the Internet, before mobile phones and twitter, before texting, before blogging. Before Wapping. We are drowning in opinions, other people's likes and dislikes. Yet the BBC assumes its right to use public money to dominate the Internet, and we are being softened up by self-interested print journalists to actually start to pay for their online archives. At least you can use newspapers to wrap your fish and chips in !
 
 
Mike H said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
I agree with Adam's points about the behaviour of the Telegraph. They're doing what any business in the free market will try to do - please their customers and maximise revenue. I rarely buy a newspaper simply because, whatever view they promulgate it is, by definition, biased towards what their readers want to hear. I think, however, that the feeding frenzy that we've seen since the start of this whole expenses business is not just about a few dishonest MPs and an appallingly badly drafted set of 'rules'. It's more to do with public dissatisfaction with politicians and the political system as a whole. Of course the financial crisis hasn't helped, but the underlying disease is the failure of democracy. Blame the EU; blame the 'Westminster bubble'; blame an authoritarian government that seems to measure it's effectiveness by the number of badly drafted laws it can impose on us; blame the media; blame the career political class.... They're all part of the problem. The expenses scandal is just the catalyst - the bomb was close to detonation anyway. I watched David Cameron's speech at the Open University in Milton Keynes yesterday. Some of what he's proposing appears to address these issues. I'd *like* to believe that he has what it takes to deliver, but he'll have a hell of a battle on his hands. At least, though, it shows that he understands the problem. Yes, he's starting to do the right things regarding expenses, but it's just the tip of the iceberg. Nadine, you need to allow paragraph breaks in comments !! :-)
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
And how about a forum, so we can start our own discussion threads, since you don't appear to interact with those who comment here.
 
 
Adam said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
I did write a fairly long reply @Democrat but it seems to have disappeared into the ether... still, thanks for the great quote. Who was it who said/wrote it?
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
I'll tell you after I post this quote. It's a doozy! "I had already learnt that even the finest mind is bound to perish if it suffers the infection of journalism. It is not merely that one defiles the mind by inflicting upon it slipshod and inaccurate English, shallow, commonplace, vulgar, hasty and prejudiced thought, and deliberate dissipation. Apart from these positive pollutions, there is the negative effect. To read a newspaper is to refrain from reading something worth while. The natural laziness of the mind tempts one to eschew authors who demand a continuous effort of intelligence. The first discipline of education must therefore be to refuse resolutely to feed the mind with canned chatter. People tell me that they must read the papers so as to know what is going on. In the first place, they could hardly find a worse guide. Most of what is printed turns out to be false, sooner or later. Even when there is no deliberate deception, the account must, from the nature of the case, be presented without adequate reflection and must seem to possess an importance which time shows to be absurdly exaggerated; or vice versa. No event can be fairly judged without background and perspective. This is from The Confessions Of Aleister Crowley. The previous was by Barry Long. Don't get them mixed up!
 
 
Mike said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
ok ok, sorry to hear you were ill, but you did stick your head over the parapet when you could have layed low. Fortunately you are not a target, so do not go sticking a big bullseye on your forehead. Surely with those other emails targeted at bringing you down should have taught you a lesson? We need you to be strong and confident, clean and honest... I have to say not terms I usually associate with your party, but admit there are perhaps more golden girls now than when we had iron ladies. But consider this, to us, the living public, living with MP's who clearly abuse the power they hold, exploit the public purse and use every opportunity to canvass the press by wearing football scarfs in the house, attend the opening of an envelope and constantly criticize their own local government despite the fact it might be the largest employer in the area with a significant number of voters, are just begging to be exposed when not for the first time, their expenses are revealed as excessive and greedy. Those of us in the "real world" can spot a common error, a mistake, even an error of judgement but when it becomes blatant contempt for the tax payer, it needs discovery, not a quick headline, over and done with and quickly forgotten, but a constant reminder until action is taken. It saddens me that the media will be equally greedy and make money from the situation, but as old Esther might say "that's life" !! I say Print and be dammed. The conservatives during the last recession did tell those affected by unemployment to get on their bikes, they were not offered any expenses, not even housing benefit on two homes. You can see how the pity might wane when we discover we are paying for duck islands, dry rot in Southampton and properties for their privately( at our expense) educated children. It is true, decent MP's will be tarnished, but its the price you pay when others play the system. Not one objected until publication, far better if just one MP had took this to the press, rather than the sneaky sale of information from an individual trusted with the official secrets act. I'm not attacking you, far from it, I'm suggesting you let it run it's course and don't get roped in by your attempts to placate or defend others. You are still needed, they are not.
 
 
Democrat said:
Responded: Wednesday, 27 May 2009
The point must surely be to fill the House of Commons with newly-elected MPs. Therefore anything other than an immediate general election is unacceptable. Yet it is not just the Labour Government that wants to hold on for up to a year. The other party leaderships certainly want an election far less than do their backbenchers, because as individuals even shadow ministers and prospective Speakers might fail to get re-elected. So they hang on. The press and TV can also afford to hang on for another year. So can the bloggers. Members of Parliament are such good copy - journalists, broadcasters, and BBC licence-fee paid comedians are having a field day at the expense of our democratic system. Meanwhile, the real crime - the bankers' bailout - remains uninvestigated. Frankly, it beggars belief that we can be so misdirected as to think that MPs' Additional Cost Allowance claims are more serious a matter than the tens of billions of pounds handed over to the banks by Gordon Brown.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Thursday, 28 May 2009
Y'know, I would have some sympathy for you, as I do think you've been treated appallingly by the media especially certain newspaper, but as you hate people like myself because I'm gay, I don't know why I should....
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Thursday, 28 May 2009
I agree with those that say if the info had been released earlier, or failing that just after the DT story first broke, the public would have been better served. Why? Well all the info could have been accessed by all and assesed in context thus stopping the drip, drip of sel ected revelations by one paper running right through an election period.
 
 
Simon said:
Responded: Thursday, 28 May 2009
"Is there not something slightly hypocritical about the DT increasing its revenue by an estimated £1 million per day in the name of public good?" No - not at all. They probably need the money to try to give their staff the same financial oportunities that so many of your colleagues appear to have taken. Simon
 
 
Jean said:
Responded: Friday, 29 May 2009
The crux, and fact is, all expenses in the media hype were (reportedly) authorized by one of Brown's own ministers. Brown's failure to make him publicly accountable pretty much confirms "sleaze" - usual media spin and manipulation. I wish you a speed recovery from the trauma inflicted.
 
 
said:
Responded: Friday, 29 May 2009
The crux, and fact is, all expenses in the media hype were (reportedly) authorized by one of Brown's own ministers. Brown's failure to make him publicly accountable pretty much confirms "sleaze" - usual media spin and manipulation. I wish you a speed recovery from the trauma inflicted.
 
 
Dave Hollingdale said:
Responded: Saturday, 30 May 2009
Hi Nadine my first visit to your blog. You were drawn to my attention cos you got I believe some kind of apoilogy from Gordon Browne when your reputation had beeen called into question re the e mail scandal, and of course you are a tasty looker but I digress. I am I have to say amazed you see fit to critise the Telegraph for the disclosures that now are available to us the public.It is a scandal MP's who have got the best out of a rotten system they have known about for years now bleat simply because "They have been caught out and exposed" Paying the money back citing "A mistake" or "an administration error "is not good enough.The MPs where applicable should be sacked and prosecuted as cheats, cos that is what they have done. Us mere mortals if found to have done any untoward fiddling would not have the lenient attitude applied to us. How on earth now will MPs regain our trust?
 
 
 
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You can contact via eMail at: dorriesn@parliament.uk

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Nadine Dorries MP
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