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Wednesday 10 July 2013

Don’t Menschn The Peacocks

[Update at end of post]

As the DCMS Committee invites Rupert Murdoch to appear before it and discuss the potentially inconvenient fallout from the recording made by more than one Sun staffer during a recent meeting, a bizarre side-show has emerged from left field courtesy of former Corby and East Northants MP Louise Mensch, now the Member for the distant constituency of Manhattan Upmarket.
Has she got news for us? Er, no

Ms Mensch, who famously made and then repeated a totally false allegation in that same Committee about Piers Morgan – and then had to withdraw it – is given to frequent Twitter interventions on UK politics, some of them displaying an ability to open virtual mouth and insert designer footwear with the most remarkable coordination. Yesterday brought an excellent example of the genre.

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) had ruled that no-one convicted and given a whole life sentence could be denied a review of their case, and nor could they be denied the possibility of release at some point in the future. This has caused the usual frothing and ranting from the Fourth Estate, but early review” and “early release” are two different things.
This Tweeter was once a Tory MP, folks

So no-one is going to be released as a result of the ruling, and a “review” also has the possible outcome that the prisoner remains a prisoner. This does not detain Ms Mensch, who observed “Thanks to the court in Strasbourg for helping the Eurosceptic cause”. So that’s another one who doesn’t understand the difference between the ECHR and the EU, then.

This set the stage for the most significant Mensch intervention of the day, on the invitation to Rupe. “Looking forward to going on Channel Four News tonight to discuss Rupert Murdoch’s Sun conference and Labour peacocking about it on Cttee” she Tweeted. So what is this “peacocking” that Labour is participating in? Well, they have five MPs on the DCMS Committee, so maybe she means them.
A bodyswerve of ultimate shamelessness

Sadly for Ms Mensch, none of those five – Ben Bradshaw, Paul Farrelly, Steve Rotheram, Jim Sheridan and Gerry Sutcliffe – has made any Twitter intervention of their own, or indeed any statement at all on the matter. And the chairman of the Committee, John Whittingdale, is a Tory. One would expect Ms Mensch to know this as she used to sit on the same Committee (see above).

So she has nothing to stand up a cheap kick at Labour, and, as the man said, there’s more: when Peter Jukes of the Daily Beast suggested “I hope you’ll declare an interest”, she replied “I have no interest to declare, as I am not an MP”. So writing a regular column for a Murdoch paper, for which I have no doubt she gets paid, does not constitute “an interest”, because she is not an MP.

D’you know, I get the feeling she believes it, too. Rupe will be ever so pleased.

[UPDATE 1635 hours: Louise Mensch has reacted less than totally enthusiastically to this post, reiterating her comments about Labour and Lib Dem members of the DCMS Committee being "partisan", but then, her own comments can hardly be described otherwise.
As can be seen, she has berated her former colleagues for "partisan peacocking ... mini-mes .. posturing ... pathetic ... never run a whelk stall". Yet she apparently sees no problem with berating anyone wanting to subject Rupe to a further light grilling (which he has welcomed) while accepting paid employment from, er, the same person.

How much longer, given she's now resident in New York City, before she becomes a contributor for Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse)? I can just see her guesting with Greta van Susteren, Megyn Kelly, or of course Bill O'Reilly. Onwards and upwards, eh?]


rob said...

"One would expect Ms Mensch to know this as she used to sit on the same Committee (see above)."

To be fair she was only a part time member as and when she could arrange her domestic affairs. Or was that just the one occasion to avoid hearing some of the Murdochs' evidence so her idiosyncratic view of the matter could not be contaminated?

Bob said...

...and her future employment by the very same Murdochs would not be in any jeopardy.