Two plus two makes…?

Time to get back in the saddle with another episode of the Dale ‘n Dizzy show:

Labour caught out on the internet again?

Remember the last time Labour MPs had to apologise for making dodgy videos? No? Well I bet Tom Watson and Sion Simon so. Well, Dizzy has a good little story HERE about 15 Labour MPs in highly marginal seats filming videos in the Houses of Parliament. He speculates that they are for use in an election campaign – I suspect that they have been filmed as a contingency for an October election. However, I find it highly debateable as to whether the Serjeant at Arms would have given permission for such videos to be filmed on the Parliamentary Estate. Perhaps a question or two should be asked…

And…

Labour PPB for marginal elections footage leaks on to the Internet?

Whatever is going here? Take a look. We have two pages of videos titles “[Constituency Name’s] Labour MP talking about Gordon Brown”. Each video is professionally done, they only appear on Google and not on Labour websites or the Labour YouTube channel. They were all posted on the same date (27th July), they were all appear to have been uploaded anonymously.

They’re all filmed within the buildings of Parliament (did they get permission from the Serjeant at Arms?), they’re all talking about how brilliant the Government and Gordon is and how it will be good for their constituency, and, last but by no means least, they’re all MPs in marginal or hyper-marginal constituency with the exception of Preston (however that has had boundary changes).

Anyone want to place a bet that this footage is going to appear in Party Political broadcasts in the run up to the next General Election, possibly nationally but definitely locally?

Watch them all here.

Nice spot Dizzy, but you really should do a little more research before you start speculating. Not only has Curious Hamster taken care of the query about filming in the House of Commons (which Iain’s acknowledged – sort of):

Since the Grant Shapps “1234 incident”, I’ve noticed that Iain Dale has written a few posts on the subject of Labour and the interwebs. Today, taking the lead from Dizzy, he suggests that the Labour Party has been up to no good filming interviews in parliament without permission from the Serjeant at Arms and loading them up onto Google video.

In this case, you can almost hear the straws crackling under his grasp. 15 Labour MPs have filmed interviews in the same spot in Westminster Hall. Given that the filming of interviews is specifically allowed without need for permission in one part of Westminster Hall and given that one of the MPs filmed was the one who gave the answer linked above, I think it’s safe to assume that permission wasn’t require in this instance.

But a quick whizz around the websites of several of the MPs who’ve appeared in these video shows that they all appear to have something else in common…

…they all have a new-ish official Labour Party MP websites, which include a pod/videocast section, using the same Tangent Labs system that serves as the backend to Labour’s main party website, the main difference being that the MP sites are actually hosted by Tangent Labs, where Labour has its main site hosted on a server at Rackspace.

So Dizzy’s possible ‘leaked’ PPB footage turns out to be no more than a job lot of short videos filmed for MPs websites and without checking the numbers, one suspects that given the general theme of these videos – how things are different now Brown’s in charge – the significance of these MPs being, in the main, from marginal constituencies, is no more than the faint suspicion that Blair’s unpopularity following the Iraq War might just have had a fair bit to do with how and why they seat is quite so marginal, hence the need to big up the fact that there’s a new guy in charge.

It’s a nice spot by Dizzy but, as usual, the real story turns out to be considerably more mundane than his speculations.

UPDATE – Dizzy’s posted a response that’s worth answering…

1: I never said they hadn’t got permission nor did I speculate that they didn’t. I simply said “did they?”

This being the question answered by Curious Hamster.

2: I don’t have to do anymore research because it’s just my personal website where I express my personal opinions. The idea that I can’t write my opinions and ask a question online unless I jump through lots of hoops available to political saddos who work in Westminster earning peanuts is.. well it’s bollocks.

Funnily enough, I always find that doing a modicum of background research makes the difference between telling a story for what it actually is – Dizzy could easily have played to the gallery with a ‘look at this bunch of grovelling shites’ story, which is about as much as his discovery actually merits – as opposed to having your speculations shot down in flames on the back of five minutes of fact checking and being made to look a bit of a tinfoil-hatted dickhead…

But that’s just my take on things…

3: I have looked around the MPs websites, not many of them have them.

Okay, so here’s the list of the ones that do have them online…

Jim Knight MP – here

Paul Clark MP – here

Paddy Tipping – links to the video on Google Vids from this page

Andrew Smith MP – on his biography page

Claire Ward MP – another linker rather than embedder

Mark Todd MP – here

Stephen Ladyman MP – yet another linker

Sarah McCarthy-Fry MP – here

Ruth Kelly MP – links from here

There are a few other assorted videos housed on the same account – here’s one of David Milliband talking about climate change as it appears on the website of Celia Barlow MP, while Anne Snelgrove has a couple of interviews with Hilary Benn and John Hutton on her site.

4: I am doing some different reseach though and there may be, as Ed Balls would say, “more to come”

Ooh, I can hardly wait…

  • 1: I never said they hadn’t got permission nor did I speculate that they didn’t. I simply said “did they?”
    2: I don’t have to do anymore research because it’s just my personal website where I express my personal opinions. The idea that I can’t write my opinions and ask a question online unless I jump through lots of hoops available to political saddos who work in Westminster earning peanuts is.. well it’s bollocks.
    3: I have looked around the MPs websites, not many of them have them.
    4: I am doing some different reseach though and there may be, as Ed Balls would say, “more to come”

  • BTW Unity, if you know any from Tangent you should tell them to fix their polls. They are ludcriously easy to rig.

  • Curious Hamster didn’t answer the question on my blog did he Unity? No, he went onto Iain’s according to your links, not mine. I;d say that makes you point moot. Unless of course you expect me to be all knowing of all content everywhere ever ever, which of course I am. I keep it in a book in my draw right next to the book of Every Error Code Ever Desigend Ever for Every Software Programme Ever. It might be true that you find a modicum of research helps tell a story for what it is Unity, I on the other hand post my instant thoughts because, guess what, that’s what a website with bit of blogging software is to me, instant thoughts. 200 words, maybe 500 if I’m lucky. Not essays so thick in details that by the time you reach end you can;t rememebr what was said at the beginning. If you don’t like it, don’t fucking read it, or post in the comments and tell me how wrong I am instead. Otherwise, fcuk off.

    As for “tinfoil-hatted dickhead” comment, don’t give me all that psuedo-supercillious old flannel you tit. I asked a question, like I always do if you read my blog, because, guess what, I’m a blogger who happens to have a job (that’s a real fucking job btw). When I blog and ask questions, it means I don’t have either the time, contacts, or for that matter the inclination to find out the answer. It’s not some twisted paranoia that drives me. If the paranoia is anywhere it’s amongst a number of you peer who seem to think I am somehow a Conservative Central Office stooge.

    What of course is amusing is this belief by people like you that somehow, for some mysterious reason, an ordinary member of the public is not allowed to ask a fucking question. Woe betide them if they do because the almighty Unity (that is a piss take name right?) will be there to call them a tin-foiled hatted paranoid fruitcake. Frankly it’s intellectually pathetic.

    The links you posted are of course lovely, but as I said, not many of them have posted the video. That comment stands. Would you like a sematic debate about my defintion of “not many”? I’m sure we could make it ramble on for while, and we could get the dictonary out and make it a proper internet discussion. That way we could waste the bandwidth people use viewing this page by adding to it’s size in unecessarily (although they’re used to it of course given the usual length posts.

  • I realll wish I didn’t miss so many words out of the middle of my sentences.

  • Jherad

    Oh come on Dizzy. Please. You are not that naive – questions with or without evidence *will* be taken as accusations by the great unwashed, and you know it. There’s no smoke without fire dontcha-know.

    I’ve read more and more of these ‘is X a paedo drug-pusher? – I’m not saying, just asking’ type ‘questions’ lately. They’re sad. Stop it.

  • Incidentally Unity, what actually is your beef here? Because, as far as I can you seem to have your knickers in a twist over the fact that I said “(did they get permission from the Serjeant at Arms?)” and nothing else. OK, you have a problem with the word “leak” in my title question too. Which of course was only raised because the videos were posted anonymously rather than under “LabourVision” usernames like all the other content.

    I also notice, if you don’t mind me just wasting the space on your MySql database (incidentally upgrade Apache, 1.3 is so yesterday), that you metnion the whole “marginal” thing as if I don’t and yet it’s key component of my title and post.

    Don’t you think that’s like really funnny? Seriously. Like, you’ve zeroed in on 10 words which formed two minor questions in a larger post; shot them down; ignored what I actually said; and then essentially said what I said whilst pretending that I didn’t say it. That’s pretty special man. That’s like genius… like out there…. you know?

    BTW, you’re WordPress is fucked as well. You seem to be searching for a column called “country_code” whilst you’re doing you clever 1337 h4x0r IP lookup stuff. Just thought I’d mention it.

  • Jherad, I don’t care if someone is too thick to tell the difference between a question and an accusation. I know that I’m not making an accusation so as far as I’m concerned, I don’t give a fuck.

  • BTW, smart example question there. Nice….. transparently cynical.. but nice.

  • Pingback: Bob Piper()

  • Oh what a pile of pissing bollocks. He hasn’t roasted me at all. He taken issue with 10 words which formed two question, whilst wistfully ignoring the rest of my post.

  • Peter Gasston

    Quote from header of DizzyThinks:

    “Dizzy thinks. And then blogs. A lot of us do it the other way round.”

    Quote from Dizzy:

    “It might be true that you find a modicum of research helps tell a story for what it is Unity, I on the other hand post my instant thoughts because, guess what, that

  • Dizzy Thinks he thinks, however, the tip of a penis is quite brainless. There’s a hole there and when stimulated sperm or piss tends to just gush out.

  • epsilon

    Tories starting their smear campaigns early, I see… No excuses for what was yet another crap and failed attempt at simultaneous attack from the Bunch of Broccoli Party.

    Anyway, Unity….you go away and everything happens…Putting aside the loss of Shannon’s Mill in Walsall and Cameron’s latest tits-up exercise in pleasing your donors; did you spot Andrew Spence- the Nazis’ best by-election candidate since 1973- resigning from the BNP.

    Well, I say ‘resigning’- I take it that having a fight with the Nazis’ Treasurer leads to much the same effect…

  • Peter Gasston, I’m trying to figure out what your point is, the first quotes, which wasn’t me, says I think before I post and then second says that errr…. I think before I post. I doubt you were being so silly as to conflate the concept of thought with research.

    Probably not wise to be quoting banner quotes from blogs though after all there are “no queers or yids or darkies” on this blog…. lest we forget. And yes, before someone points out it is a quote from a comic, mentioning it is called being facetious, it’s something I excel at, along with shooting my pearl juices all over my keyboard according to the northern monkey.

  • For the record, I didn’t see much of a problem with the way Dizzy asked the question. It was Iain’s emphasis and his “Labour Caught Out on the Internet Again?” post title which I thought particularly worthy of mockery (especially in light of “1234”).

    That was the reason why I took this up with Iain rather than Dizzy.

    And Mr Dale still hasn’t really acknowledged that there was no problem with the videos despite my offer to forward him the email I received today. I’m strangely unsurprised.

    On another minor point re “hoops available to political saddos who work in Westminster”. Just in case that was aimed my way, I’ve never even visited Westminster, let alone worked there. Google, on the other hand, is easily accessible even up here in Aberdeen.

  • …Incidentally Unity, what actually is your beef here?…

    Yes, I was wondering this. Was it just a mischievous desire to get a rise out of Dizzy, old chap?

  • king cnut

    Interesting how quick the “right wing bloggers” are to start squealing when you present them with a few facts.

  • Owen McManus

    The words “Throwing your toys out of the pram” spring to mind.