Nadine Dorries, the Conservative frontbencher who claimed the Daily Telegraph’s revelations on expenses could drive MPs to suicide, has had her blog shut down by lawyers acting for the newspaper.
The virtually unprecedented action against a serving MP came after Dorries was disowned by her party leader, David Cameron, and described as “wacky” by senior Conservative sources. She had claimed that MPs were being “tortured” by the Telegraph’s dripfeed of revelations.
Dorries was defended by fellow bloggers yesterday, including Iain Dale, who said he had not agreed with Dorries’s allegations “but so what? I defend her right to say it, no matter how ill advised I think some of it might have been for her personally. Can it really now be illegal or libellous to question a newspaper’s agenda and motives, or those of its owners?”
Below is the bit that seems to have triggered legal action against Dorries (from Google’s cache of her post of May 22, 2009):
The Telegraph are uncovering a few cases of fraud, but not enough, so they are more than slightly embellishing some of the stories. I write as a case in point.
Enter the Barclay brothers, the billionaire owners of The Daily Telegraph. Rumour is that they are fiercely Euro sceptic and do not feel that either of the main parties are Euro sceptic enough. They have set upon a deliberate course to destabilise Parliament, with the hope that the winners will be UKIP and BNP.
A quick online check of the Barclay brothers and their antics on the Island of Sark is enough to give this part of the rumour credence.
Another rumour is that the disc was never acquired and sold by an amateur, but it was in fact a long term undercover operation run by the Telegraph for some considerable time, carefully planned and executed; and that the stories of the naive disc nabber ringing the news desk in an attempt to sell the stolen information are entirely the work of gossip and fiction.
These rumours do have some credibility given that this has all erupted during the European Election Campaign and turn out is expected to be high with protest votes, courtesy of the Daily Telegraph, or should I say the Barclay brothers.
Now, if this is all a power game executed by the BBs, how would they do that? It is a fact that these men are no fools and are in fact self-made billionaires. I would imagine and believe that if any of this is true, they know the British psyche well enough to whip up a mood of public anger, hence the long running revelations in the DT.