Saturday, March 03, 2007

Sinister politics

The "Decent" left website Harry's Place links, with comments turned off, to where you can vote for randomly selected Conservatives under the banner heading "How much do you hate this Tory?" is a part of the transpero project. Transpero attempts to rally a flagging Blairite wing of NuLabour, stating that:

Despite all the claims of the Thatcherites it is Blair, not Thatcher, who has secured economic success for the people. The Tories gave us boom and bust with mass unemployment and called it all 'a price worth paying'.

Labour's success can be measured by the fact it is impossible to imagine any party now running for office and defending the core economic project and record of the Thatcherites.
The dishonesty of this is almost impressive; NuLabour has kept all the significant Thatcherite economic and labour reforms, and has been coasting on the Tory economic legacy.

Transpero has two live projects, according to its website: and, which is just a hagiographic Tony worship site, complete with photograph of Blair gazing statesmanlike into the middle distance.

All three websites are registered by Adrian McMenamin, an old associate of Peter Mandleson and a well-known spin meister with previous experience of Internet dirty tricks. He once dressed up as Sherlock Holmes, pretending to be searching for Oliver Letwin who was hiding after some incautious remarks.

Such fun. is almost certainly meant to be fun too. This is a guess, because if you're not on the left, it's difficult to equate hatred with fun. If you are on the left, it seems to be easy.

At McMenamin's blog he writes of his joy at being plugged at Harry's Place:
I still remember the joy when I first discovered Harry’s Place about two or three years ago - suddenly a place where nobody apologised for smashing fascists just because they claimed to be “anti-imperialists” and where there was a robust defence of Tony Blair’s approach to foreign policy.
So I am very pleased that they are now linking to HateMyTory - time a few lefties influenced the voting there.

Of course, I broadly disagree with most HP posters on their rather uncritical stance on Israel’s policy on occupation - but that is usually because I expect more and better from the pro-Israeli left - it’s no good asking Palestinians and their supporters to commit to democracy whilst endorsing a 40 year military occupation.
Harry's Place is associated with The Euston Manifesto, which McMenamin has signed, stating his reasons:
I signed because I think the progressive and humanist values of the enlightenment need to be defended and because the British left needs to show those are its values.
Ostentatious hatred is not something I think of as an enlightenment value. It is, however, very characteristic of the left - "decent" or not.

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