The Ballad of Glenda Gobshite

I can’t help but be rather amused by the ongoing catfight between Nadine Dorries and Recess Monkey of which Tim Ireland has helpfully provided a running commentary.

On the one hand RM does look to have pushed the envelope of good taste a little in digging out the Facebook profile of Dorries’s daughter but then, on the other, there is no other MP quite so badly positioned to run off at the mouth than Dorries after the cowardly manner in which she shut down comments on her taxpayer-funded website rather than withdraw the false allegation that members of Science & Technology Committee has passed information to Ben Goldacre.

And I should point out that not only did she, and Bob Spink, publish their own ‘minority’ report in opposition to the committee’s main report on abortion, but the ‘report’ is included as an appendix to the main report – I’m still checking to see how this may or may not relate to parliamentary rules regarding the provision of misleading information to MPs, so don’t think you’re off the hook just yet, Nadine.

As for running off to Schillings, of all people, not to mention the thinly veiled ‘paedo’ smear directed at RM, well the less said about the better, although I do wonder whether its not time for the Parliamentary Standards Commissioner to take a look at her blog, which she funds from the incidental expenses provision paid to MPs to:

meet the costs of accommodation for office or surgery use; equipment and supplies for office or surgery; work commissioned or other services; and certain travel and communications.

Nothing about trying to bitchslap a blogger in there.

Still, all this has led me to the view that its time we gave Dorries a proper nickname, one worth having.

Yes, I know that ‘Mad Nad’ is a fairly widespread use, but it doesn’t quite have the right ring to it, and in any case, there’s mad and there’s mad, and even Dorries fails to quite match up to the current undisputed champion in the UK wingnut stakes, the Fifth Horsewoman of the Apocalypse, Mad Mel Phillips.

What I’ve got in mind is something more akin to, say, ‘Daggers’ (short for Dagenham), the nickname applied to Margaret Thatcher because she was considered to be ‘two stops past Barking’, or perhaps ‘Chingford Skinhead’ (or ‘Chingford Strangler’) aka Norman Tebbit or one of more recent favorites, ‘Dr Demento’, as coined by Simon Carr in referring to John Reid during his stint has Home Secretary.

A good political nickname needs both humour – obviously, and the more biting the better – and to tell you something about the [perceived] character of the individual you’re referring to, so what can we say about Nadine Dorries.

Well, looking at her ‘style’ of writing there’s one obvious comparison to be made:

Glenda Slagg is a spoof columnist in the satirical magazine Private Eye. She first appeared in the mid-1960s. Her writing style is a pastiche of several female columnists in UK newspapers, notably Jean Rook and Lynda Lee-Potter; brash, vitriolic and inconsistent.

Glenda’s column usually takes the form of several paragraphs lauding people in the news that week, followed by several paragraphs deriding the people she just praised. For example, one paragraph will begin “Hats off to Anne Robinson!”, the other will begin “Anne Robinson? Aren’tchajustsickofher!” She finishes her column by listing, with heavy sexual innuendo, the men in the news she finds attractive that week, often using a variation on her catchphrase “Crazy name, crazy guy!?!” She signs off with “Byeeeee!!!!”.

Her characteristic style also includes overuse of exclamation marks and question marks, and saying “Geddit!!??!” whenever she makes a joke. She is often fired and rehired by “Ed” in the space of a paragraph.

Despite being fictional, Glenda Slagg has become an archetype in UK journalism.

Yes, she’s definitely a ‘Glenda’.

So far, so good… but what about something else to reflect on her background – she is from Liverpool originally.

Well, fortunately, Scousers, thanks to their close connections to Ireland, have an ideal word to describe Dorries:

Gobshite (n).

1. Loud-mouthed person who talks a lot, but nothing with any value – as in shite coming out of their gob.

2. Irish slur for a person who loudly extols the virtues of himself (or herself) and will attempt to coerce weaker people onto his side by colossally ridiculing them as a punishment for not doing so.

That seems to be Dorries to a tee.

So it’s settled then. Nadine Dorries I hereby dub you Glenda Gobshite.

  • how about Bluster GoNads?

  • Shudder. Hope I never fall foul of you, Unity.

  • Heh, I like it but it’ll take a while to catch on.

  • Katherine

    I have to say that I think Nadine Dorries is a poor excuse for an MP and a poor excuse for a human being, but Recess Money’s action was absolutely bloody appalling and I can bring myself to feel too sorry for him. And quite frankly, looking up someone’s teenage daughter’s Facebook profile for the purpose of bashing that person is weird and creepy.

  • Mad Nad’s daughter is about as much a teenager as I am – she’s a woman in her twenties not a child.

  • nadwatch

    Nadine’s back

    http://www.badscience.net/?p=634

    Nadine Dorries and the Hand of Hope

    and this time she’s pushing a hoax photostory.