On Line abuse, false claim


.At Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs), one MP asked a question regarding the level of abuse she received during the election campaign. All abuse absolutely needs to be condemned. But there is one massive problem. The MP in question faces questions about her own behaviour – and her team has even faced an investigation over an alleged assault at a hustings.

Allegations of abuse

Sheryll Murray, MP for South East Cornwall, made several allegations of abuse during the campaign. In particular, she claimed:

Over the past months, I’ve had swastikas carved into posters, social media posts like burn the witch… People putting Labour Party leaflets on my home, photographed them and pushed them through my letterbox. And someone even urinated on my office door. Hardly kinder, gentler politics.

And she asked:

Can my Right Honourable friend suggest what can be done to stop this intimidation which may well be putting off good people from serving in this place?

But Leah Browning, one of Murray’s constituents, while condemning any abuse, Browning pointed out that many local people feel they have been ignored by Murray:

Whilst I do not condone such behaviour to deface posters etc, I do understand and share frustrations from people who essentially are silenced and trodden on by the MP and her voting record. If your views do not match those of her own, she blocks you on social media platforms, sends out blanket non-response letters and now will no longer even be accountable at local hustings. Sheryll has removed any opportunity for scrutiny or accountability and has made herself actively disengaged and unavailable to a number of constituents.
In fact, during her appearance at her local hustings, it was Murray and her team who faced allegations about their behaviour. She made headline news after she claimed she was “pleased” there were food banks in her constituency. At the same hustings, she said to the audience “don’t be so rude” after they applauded a teacher. She told another person to “sit down” when they asked a question she didn’t like about Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, she threatened to call the police on a disabled woman who was questioning her. And if that wasn’t enough, her team was also investigated for an alleged assault over an incident at the hustings.

Browning went on to say:

“Her comments about food banks and her behaviour at one of the only two hustings she attended was utterly appalling and not fitting of an MP. Sheryll has, I feel, closed her door on a large proportion of her constituents, particularly the disadvantaged and disaffected. There is a lot of anger and upset amongst individuals and families walking the breadline, who have no representation.”

Browning also challenged Murray’s claims that someone had urinated on her office door as a political statement:

Sheryll has chosen to have her office next door to Liskeard’s only bar/club, [which is] open ’til the early hours of the morning and I am unsurprised that a nearby doorway be used in such a way. However, it does seem to be a considerable assumption that it is in some way an attack on her…
So unless someone left a note for Murray claiming that they pissed on her doorway as a political act, this does seem a dangerous assumption. And a cynical one, given that Murray is using it for political point-scoring.


There is a very real and very nasty social media culture of attacking people, especially women in the public eye. And it is one we all need to challenge. Any abusive comments Murray received on social media should be condemned. But it is also worth pointing out that having a political difference is not abuse. And as Browning points out, this is an MP known for blocking people on social media because they have different views.

It is also worth pointing out that this is not a problem with the ‘far left’, as Murray implies. It is a problem across the board. And it only takes a quick look at the scale of abuse Diane Abbott received during the campaign to see both how massive the problem is and how far-reaching it is.


Writer Jack Monroe wrote movingly about their experiences of online abuse:

Online abuse has made me suicidal more than once. I have taken the pills. I have stood on the train bridge. I have been driven insane. I have had periods where I have been unable to work because I am such a wreck from sustained hatred and vitriol. I have lost work. I have been literally driven insane by hatred from strangers. It interrupts, it diverts, it permeates, it seeps in, you bullying bastards. It’s there when you’re reading bedtime stories to your kids. It strangles you in your sleep. It follows you in your hand, in your head. It slowly destroys you from the inside, a rot starts to set in. You become scared to say anything, scared to be anyone. You hide. You cry.
This is not a ‘one size fits all’ political issue. It is a disgusting trend that is having a massive impact on people’s lives. It needs to be tackled. But using it to try and score political points against the left when abuse is so widespread across the political spectrum is cheap and disingenuous. And it degrades all those who have suffered online abuse.

Important questions

Any abuse Murray has received is wrong. But the reality is that there’s a massive problem with her claims. Her very well-documented behaviour at hustings and her treatment of her constituents speak volumes. Her further claims that her office was urinated on are wildly presumptuous. And putting Labour leaflets through her letterbox? It’s hard to see how this is even considered abuse.

Murray has used an issue that is causing people real distress and illness to score cheap political points. Her comments regarding “kinder, gentler politics” are a cheap dig at the Labour Party, when this is a cross-political and cross-society problem. And that is shameful.

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The right-wing media just entered peak delusion-mode defending hapless Theresa May and her spineless Tory MPs

The right-wing media just entered peak delusion-mode defending hapless Theresa May and her spineless Tory MPs
Yesterday the Tories showed their true colours again as they almost unanimously voted against Labour’s anti-austerity amendment to the Queen’s Speech – an amendment which simply called for fair pay and proper funding to the heroic emergency services and other public sector workers.

The Tories combined forces with their freshly-bribed terrorist sympathising friends the DUP to defeat the amendment by a slim majority of just 14 votes.

The Tory/DUP pro-austerity vote followed a day of hapless and chaotic Tory U-turns over their stance on the public-sector pay cap. Yet, in an incredible display of grand self-delusion, the right-wing press still attempted to spin the Tories’ grand charade into a victory for May.

Corbyn’s anti-austerity amendment was supported by 309 MPs, and if it passed it would have been seen as the first official nail in the coffin of austerity. Of course, it would have also added to the already numerous nails hammered into the weak and wobbly balsa wood coffin of May’s soon-to-be defunct Prime ministerial career.
MPs spent the day debating the amendment, and during the afternoon reports emerged suggesting that the Tories were considering a breathtaking U-turn on their austerity policies.
The Tories had previously committed themselves to keeping the public-sector pay cap until 2020.

However, later in the day, May’s official spokesperson confirmed her actual position, insisting that the:  policy has not changed

As noted by Corbyn’s former spokesperson Matt Zarb-Cousin, the Tories had boxed themselves into a typically stupid corner.
It is becomingly increasingly obvious that May is literally leading a coalition of chaos.

Yet, despite all of this, the right-wing press is still attempting to portray the Tory-DUP austerity-vote as a victory for May and a disaster for Corbyn.

These headlines perfectly illustrate the right-wing’s delusional thinking, with the typically barmy Express leading the lunacy:


To be fair, the Express has always suffered a severe reality deficit. For instance, they commonly report on ‘sightings’ of the Loch Ness Monster (and no, I’m not referring to stories about our bunker minded “Prime Minister.)


Corbyn, however, was not alone in attempting this so-called bid to “sabotage” the Queen’s speech. Earlier in the day, during debates regarding the Queen’s Speech, potential rebel Tories voiced similar anti-austerity opinions.

Tory MP and Chair of the Health Select Committee in the House of Commons, Dr Sarah Wollaston, warned that the pay cap has had a ‘significant impact on morale’ in the health service and that it is time to ‘think again’.

A sentiment echoed by former Tory minister Andrew Murrison, who said:

It is absolutely right we should now be looking at removing that cap on pay for public sector workers.
The reality is clear: the Tories are spinning into oblivion, and the only people they are really voting against are us and our country. Even Tory ministers are conceding to Corbyn’s Labour over austerity.

Yet, May just cannot face the humiliation of voting against her own party’s 7-year long economic disaster that has been austerity.

May was all too eager to commend and thank our hard working heroes in the emergency services following the spree of terror attacks and the Grenfell Tower blaze — yet, when it comes to really supporting them and the work they do, she throws them under the bus.

Of course, the damage caused by austerity extends beyond the emergency services, and beyond the public sector itself. The real reason for austerity is now more clear than ever — by capping and freezing public sector pay, private sector pay is driven down as well. This is, of course, neoliberalism 101. In order to allow the private sector to exploit and make as much profit for the few at the top, wages, worker’s rights and job security must be kept at a minimum for everybody else.

So long as the public sector continues to pay at the pace of inflation (which is historically low at the moment) — then the private sector has to compete by paying more or the same.

A large proportion of the general public supports higher public spending on things such as disability benefits, and the results of the snap general election add yet more weight to Corbyn’s anti-austerity programs.

Now, even senior Tories are conceding that it is time to re-think austerity. Yet the Tory Party just cannot admit defeat on this, and have proved they are not brave enough to vote against their own leader even though a large section of Tory MPs know what they’re voting for is conclusively against the best interests of the country.

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Hang on in there it’s going to get rough

This is where it gets really serious..
The Tory party is the oldest political party in the UK. They believe absolutely that they are born to govern. They also have one of the most effective campaign machines in central office, massive financial support and of course media support.
The last election caught them out a bit because of social media. That wont happen again, they will use every resource they have to buy up space and if they can’t will try and neutralise it.
Another huge factor in their thinking is time. Hang on in the short term, batten down the hatches till the euphoria of the Corbyn effect wears off, till the supporters become dissillusioned and frustrated and slowly their best friend Apathy steps in to save them. If possible as another female PM did when she was unpopular, engineer a war cos then you can play the patriotism card.
We need, if we are to win this war, patience, resilience and unity. The tory high command will already be planning the next 5 years action plan. They will be discussing things such as ‘a plan if Jeremy Corbyn becomes ill and is forced to retire. This is cold hard dirty politics and they are true masters of its dark arts. We also must plan ahead, not be reactive to their plans but get ahead of them. hunker down for a long term war, keep our passion alive, not be put off by setbacks but keep on pushing our agenda forward.
We have won a few battles yes but the war is still raging. We have to have a long term plan, not just around one man, brilliant though he is, but around his ideas. Keep on pushing that socialist agenda forward as a positive message.
Please everyone keep motivated, keep active, keep dreaming and above all else keep fighting. Both the enemy without and the enemy within, those siren voices that claim if we water our ideas down then we could get power, As May has proved Power without principle is corrupt. Keep fighting. You are the many

Rant on Body Shaming and the Right wing press

Major rant……OK I have long held this view but that was through art but after seeing the pure hatred and body shaming that went on today over a picture from Glastonbury it seems that it needs saying. The denizens of the UKIP/Mail?Sun etc were shocked and offended!!!!! REALLY
You want to be shocked and offended, well we live in a country where its ok for your kids to pop down to the local cinema or watch TV and see people blown up, murdered, tortured or maimed and thats ok so long as there isnt a hint of a naked breast or buttock! We all know that the merest suggestion of breast or buttock will harm and damage young people for ever but death, blood and gore is fine!
How about being shocked and offended by people in this country going hungry, or burning to death, or young people with illnesses scared of the cuts to care and worried that the care they need won’t be there in the future. Now that is shocking and offensive.
How about being shocked or offended by Wars in which thousands of innoent children and adults are gassed or bombed. Being in a country where sick and disabled people are literally dying as a result of government policy.
It is apparently also fine for a guy to wander about with his shirt off but not a woman!
Now either get shocked and offended with that or stop being so sexist.
And stop sexualising the body,
That view of the body is what justifies the attitude of’well she was asking for it’.
Isnt it time we all grew up.
The body is a thing of beauty not seuality. If you are a creationist then it is the ultimate , God creating something in his or her own image, if you are an evolutionist then it is a product of a long design process. A wonderful thing. Not just an object for sexual gratification.
Prudery isnt about modesty it is about control. An elite making rules and codes of behaviour so that they can control others, Many mainstream religions denigrating women to second class status then justifying it as either Gods will or because they are a distraction!!! Really? a distraction? Is that not a damning admission of how poorly women are treated? The main reason they do it though is because they fear the power that women have, nurturers, healers, thinkers, in fact anything they want to be. That scares those who would control. Sadly this attitude has even now got some women believing it.
This country has its priorities so wrong, Most other countries in Europe do not share this prurient attitude, they also have higher participation of women in public life, more equality and less crimes against womn. Its time we got our collective shit together and stopped being silly little prudes and really get shocked and offended about stuff that actually does harm.
The bloody minded side of me says lets have a major protest but>>>>>>>