Another day, another outburst of unthinking, intolerant and obsessive ranting arrives on Twitter courtesy of (thankfully) former Tory MP Louise Mensch, who has shown herself to be an occasionally over-sensitive soul whenever the name of Tim Hunt is mentioned, routinely shouting down anyone whose point of view does not concur exactly with her own. Peaceable disagreement is something she is not prepared to tolerate.
(c) Doc Hackenbush 2014
One of those whose views do not concur with those of Ms Mensch is Sue Nelson of the BBC, and you can see here the latest outbursts from upmarket Manhattan sent in her direction, beginning with “Oh and @ScienceNelson make sure you declare your @Connie_stlouis interest when you fauxport on #TimHunt”. Who is this “fauxport”?
This is soon explained: “@ScienceNelson you false reported like you always do Sue, and like @deborahblum always does. Come clean”. There’s more: “No, you did it. Lying again. #TimHunt”. And more: “This is the sick sort of stuff @ScienceNelson has flung at Sir Tim Hunt and his family all along”. And yet more: “where's your blog you hideous smearer and liar?”. So accusations of smearing, lying, “false reporting”, and “sick stuff”.
That’s most interesting, if only because on all of those counts Louise Mensch is right now standing in an awfully draughty glasshouse. She “falsely reported” that the New York Times was publishing “agent’s names” from Edward Snowden’s trove of NSA information. They were not. She “falsely reported” the Jeremy Clarkson disciplinary case to her readers at the Murdoch Sun, smearing the Corporation - wrongly.
And, talking of “sick stuff” being flung at others, how about Ms Mensch’s harassment of Abby Tomlinson, custodian of the #Milifandom hashtag? As for lying, we have the recent claim that there was an EU coup in Portugal (wrong), a number of totally untrue claims made about the case of Sudanese woman Meriam Ibrahim, and the Hancock-style claim that Charlie Hebdo was an actual person.
Could it get even worse? You betcha, says Sarah: BBC Songs Of Praise was slammed over its broadcast from a refugee camp near Calais, with Ms Mensch claiming the worshippers were fake because they were Muslims (wrong). She claimed that, as a politician, she never lied or briefed. That’s not quite true either. And her pursuit of the HuffPost over an article about Cathy Newman of Channel 4 News was utterly wrong.
On top of all that, she claimed she would sue author and playwright Peter Jukes for libel, and sue me for discussing the matter. That, too, was a complete pack of lies. It should also be noted that Ms Mensch is not averse to using her Sun column to smear those whom she knows do not have the means to take her to the cleaners.
[UPDATE 6 November 1150 hours: it now seems that Louise Mensch's campaign against all those who have not agreed totally with her on Tim Hunt is not all that it seems.
She has now updated her "Tim Hunt Apology Timeline" to include a correction. The wording makes for interesting reading: "I wrongly stated ... I should have checked this more carefully ... I apologise for my sloppiness in this regard".
One has to wonder what else she might have got wrong.
This is yet another reason why the vicious and sadistic trashing of those who do not agree with her - whether directly, or by those supporters who have trusted her every word - is bang out of order.
Louise Mensch needs to look to herself first, and then wind up her little Wild West Show]