Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Copeland Labour's latest foray into post-truth politics

As the Prime Minister said, it is now Labour who are the Nasty Party

It would appear sadly likely that the forthcoming by-election in Copeland is going to be characterised by some pretty nasty tactics, particularly on the part of Copeland Labour party, which will not prevent them from accusing everyone else at the top of their voices of every dirty trick in sight.

In the city where I grew up one of the few points of agreement between the Conservative and Labour activists was that the dirtiest tactics always came from the Liberals (later Liberal Democrats,) and in that part of the world it was true.

Not in Copeland.

Not for the first time Labour in Copeland are running a "Project Fear" campaign, taking a genuine issue and doing their best to frighten people by making it much worse. The wrap-around Labour advert on the outside of this week's "Whitehaven News" is a case in point.

What do you think would be the Labour party's reaction if the Conservatives took, say, some of the things Labour in Copeland have been saying about UKIP which contained words like "UKIP believes XYZ" and the Conservatives reprinted it on our campaign material without the "UKIP believes" bit so as to attribute "XYZ" to the Labour person concerned, as if the UKIP quote was his or her own opinion?

You'd be able to hear the screams of Labour outrage from Millom to Keswick!

Well, that's pretty much exactly what Labour did to the Prime Minister on the front page of the wraparound advert which this week's Whitehaven News comes inside.

The quote in large letters attributed to the PM is not a statement of her own opinions: in context the following words should appear in front of it:

 “…the Success Regime considers a general consensus exists amongst clinicians that ..."

In other words, it's not a statement of her own opinions, it's not even a quote. She was saying what a second group of people had told her a third group thought.

I could say a lot more but I am not going to let a bunch of political charlatans who have been mismanaging West Cumbria for fifty years, and given all politicians in the area a bad name, distract me from a large number of other points which need to be made and things which need to be done.

The Conservatives will reply to this and other Labour smears in due course. In the meantime I would suggest that, with a few honourable exceptions, if a member of Copeland Labour party tells you it's raining, it may be a good idea to look outside and check before going to the trouble of hunting up your umbrella.


Chris Whiteside said...

A slight modification to the normal comments policy for the blog applies to this post.

I have read enough untrue statements from the Labour party in the last three weeks to last me the rest of my life and I am not going to allow any more untrue statements to go up here from Labour trolls who do not have the guts to identify themselves.

So if you want to comment on this thread, please sign your name.

Jim said...

I never did understand the "good party, nasty party" thing. Its never really made much sense.

As far as I can remember i have never really thought "left wing" but a lot of people do.

It does not matter what anyone does, the old saying "you can please some of the people some of the time" applies. or more simply "you can't please everyone"

So all parties will be the good, the bad and the ugly party at all times.

Its just which party you are in will differ depending on whom you ask.

As "pin head" in the movie hellraiser puts it, when asked "who are you"
"Explorers, in the further regions of experience, demons to some, angels to others"

or thats how I have always seen it anyway

Jim - with an im and a capital J

Jim said...

Though I have never been one for anonymous commenting either, I dont really mind if people agree or disagree with me, that is after all what debate, negotiation and all of politics in general is.

If i have to hide behind some sort of vail to make a point, then maybe my point is not really worth making.

Chris Whiteside said...

Fair comment, Jim, and thank you for that.

There are some decent people and some nasty ones in all parties.

There are a few people who will write the most terrible things about others and sign their names to it - and Copeland Labour party has several such people, although Fiona Stanton, whose name appears on the imprint for their current official publicity material, seems to have ensured that the imprint with her name is about as small and difficult to read as it could be while still complying with legal requirements.

Nevertheless, people who are being entirely open about their identity are always more careful both about the truth of what they write and about how rude they are to other people than those who post anonymously.

Like you, I don't particularly like the idea of anonymous comments and I myself always sign my name. However, I do usually ban anonymous comments because doing so shuts down some constructive input from people who don't want the hassle of registering or are afraid somebody who doesn't like what they have to say might be vindictive towards them. What is particularly sad is that such fears are not always entirely groundless - I even recall one individual telling me that they did get some negative feedback from a work colleague about comments they had posted on this very blog.

The time when I make an exception is when I am getting particularly silly anonymous comments. If I were to simply delete them, the people concerned would come back with the allegation that I am censoring views I don't like because "the truth hurts" or words to that effect.

Actually it is the lies which annoy me, but I prefer not to have to resort to censorship. I have found so far that if I write, "If you want to post something like that, sign your name to it" most of the trolls have usually gone away, but they cannot accuse me of censorship.

Incidentally I do have a backup plan for if people start posting here using false names, but I'd rather not give that away until and unless I need it.

Jim said...

I guess it springs from my child hood, when it was, either say it to my face or don't say it.

I had no real problem with being talked about, but if some one had a grievance with me, then it was better I knew about it, kind of thing.

sometimes (well actully more than often, if i am honest) it was me immeidatly taking the defence, but some times it was more of "hmmmm, actually you have a bit of a point there"

Chris Whiteside said...

Exactly. My parents told me never to say something behind someone's back that I would not say to their face.