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So, yes, freedom of speech. That would include a right for MPs to respond with their views when a major newspaper decides that the best way to highlight a major flaw in the system of government is to go on a rampage, attacking each and every MP individually, wouldn't it?

Like this blog by Tory MP Nadine Dorries

Yes, that's a broken link (google cached version - you've got to love google for things like this). OK, I may not agree with everything she says, but she has the right to say it and she does have some valid points.

I don't know what the telegraph's stance on UKIP/BNP is, but I would be very surprised if their motivation for the articles has been entirely about reforming the expenses system. The way they have spread it out over such a period of time and gone for personal attacks on individual MPs doesn't seem to fit with that. Although I'd probably veer more on the conclusion that they're generally doing it to sell more papers and gain a bit of the limelight.

However, if they are going to respond to criticism like this, then what little respect for them I had left after past couple of weeks, has now gone entirely.

Telegraph group takes down Dorries blog (via jackofkent)


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
23rd May, 2009 19:18 (UTC)

“But many will now be wondering whether the point has not been adequately made," he says. "The continuing systematic humiliation of politicians itself threatens to carry a heavy price in terms of our ability to salvage some confidence in our democracy.”

MPs have put their wrongdoing (largely) above the law; the only remaining sanction is publicity. If they want publication to happen all at once, well, they've had plenty of opportunity to arrange it, and for that matter still have that opportunity.

23rd May, 2009 21:30 (UTC)
Not that I particularly want to defend Ms Dorries - or newspapers - but we now live in a world where newspapers (supposed bastions of the truth) can be bought by anyone with enough money. The guy who owns Asian Wives and OK! now owns The Express. The Barclay brothers, who own The Telegraph, aren't exactly anonymous proprietors who are comfortable with non-interference.

And who let all this happen? MPs and the British government. I'd almost say it was mini justice.

I look forward to Miss Dorries repeating the allegations in the House of Commons, where MPs have protection from libel.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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