The post-Parliamentary career of (fortunately) former Tory MP Louise Mensch has not been a happy one: apart from an addition to her “chick lit” oeuvre, it has been steadily downhill: the Murdochs were persuaded to sink millions into the money pit that was the group blog Heat Street, which has now thankfully folded, and her career as an analyst for Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) along with it.
Along the way, Ms Mensch has started a blog called Patribiotics, which has published ever more lurid allegations about Combover Crybaby Donald Trump. Despite warnings that much of what she was putting out there was nothing more than batshit conspiracy mongering, her followers kept faith. But now has come news that she and co-conspirator Claude Taylor have been hoaxed. And it is the paper she hates most that broke the news.
Yes, the Guardian has the story: “Explosive allegations about Donald Trump made by online writers with large followings among Trump critics were based on bogus information from a hoaxer who falsely claimed to work in law enforcement” reads the damning headline. Taylor Tweeted out fake details; Ms Mensch backed him up.
Such as? “The source’s false tips included an allegation, which has been aggressively circulated by Mensch and Taylor, that Trump’s inactive fashion model agency is under investigation by New York authorities for possible sex trafficking … Their false stories about Trump have included a claim that he was already being replaced as president by Senator Orrin Hatch in a process kept secret from the American public”.
How easy was it to rumble the source? “The source falsely claimed to be an official named ‘Caitlin’ in the office of Eric Schneiderman, New York’s attorney general. She shared details of her hoax on the condition of anonymity to avoid retaliation from followers of Taylor and Mensch. The Guardian verified her true identity and confirmed that she is not named Caitlin and does not work for Schneiderman”. That easy.
Could it get any more implausible? As if you need to ask: “Taylor and Mensch also repeated an invented claim from the source that former president Bill Clinton knew of criminal wrongdoing by Trump’s model agency and was was preparing to testify for the prosecution”. Louise Mensch is bang to rights. Claude Taylor has said sorry.
So is she going to hold her hands up and admit getting it badly wrong? But Ms Mensch is incapable of apologising, or even admitting she fouled up. So the Guardian revelations have been followed by a defiant series of Twitter outbursts. “I am at a loss to understand why @Jonswaine would assert contrary to my explicit denial to him that I ever had any contact with this person” she began, but Swaine didn’t assert that.
It got worse: “It is utterly false my story was sourced to the woman @TrueFactsStated knew. I have never had any contact with her in any way”. Her claims just happened to come out only after his, that’s all. “If @JonSwaine and @TheGuardian think @RealDonaldTrump is not being investigated for @TrumpModels by @AGSchneiderman - they are flat wrong”. Pony up something Taylor hasn’t, then. We’re waiting.
Still she persists: “I cannot understand why @jonswaine and @guardian are falsely reporting that my story had anything whatever to do with Claude's source”. As so often with Ms Mensch, she gets busted, she shouts “liar”. Won’t work. Yet on she goes, digging all the way: “The @Guardian and @jonswaine simply made this up. My story (as I told him at length) is not sourced to a woman whose name I don't even know”.
Louise Mensch has been able to spin her successive crocks of crap for so long partly because of her establishment background, and more especially because, as a part of the Murdoch empire for so long, few were prepared to call her out for the fraud she was.
That period of deference is now well and truly over. Louise Mensch has been caught bang to rights spinning one unhinged and most likely poorly sourced conspiracy theory after another, on top of all the untrue and often defamatory rubbish she got away with in the UK. It’s time for the media to call her out for what she is: a film-flam artist, a huckster, a grifter, a con artist, a deluded fantasist, a Walter Mitty character who has lost touch with reality.
And don’t forget, Westminster people: the Tories allowed her to become an MP.