A new storm is brewing – Monbiot vs Delingpole.
I think I have worked out where commentator James Delingpole is coming from. He pretends to be a climate change denier and enemy of environmentalists. In reality he’s a mole, paid by Greenpeace to inflict as much damage on the anti-green cause as possible. And he’s doing a marvellous job.
So wrote George Monbiot on the 27th January.
The reason: Delingpole had apparently written a blog on the Telegraph about a letter that someone had sent to their MP. Monbiot goes on to say:
It looks to me like a polite enquiry from someone concerned about climate change. Delingpole, however, saw it as a “nauseating email” which must have come from a “disgusting eco-fascist organisation”, though he didn’t know which organisation this might be. His post was headlined “Conservative candidates stalked by eco bullies”. Much worse, he published the man’s name and home address.
Delingpole’s bootboys took the hint and immediately swung into action. Within a few minutes of the comments opening, they had published the man’s telephone number and email address, a photo of his house (“Note all the recycling going on in his front garden”), his age and occupation. Then they sought to tell him just what a low opinion they had of “stalking” and “bullying”.
After some 20 hours of venomous comments, the Telegraph deleted the post, without trace or comment. That was before Monbiot posted his article.
Delingpole replied in a Telgraph blog post today entitled “Monbiot: an apology”. Despite it’s title, his first sentence is
George Monbiot is cwoss. Weally, WEALLY cwoss.
He does make some kind of an attempt at an apology to the victim of his earlier post, but mostly it is a diatribe against Monbiot. His final paragraph is
Monbiot, you apology for a columnist, you are as over as the dinosaurs. As finished as the Medieval Warm Period. Your cause is lost. Give up now and become a teepee maker instead. They’re very popular in your part of Wales, I gather.
I expect this dialogue to continue for a while (though I could be wrong).
What does it actually tell us, though?
- About the integrity of the columnists – not a lot in isolation. They are both guilty of name calling, though I think that Delingpole is the more vitriolic of the two ( in this dialogue alone, but historically I think Delingpole always has been).
Delingpole was certainly wrong in publishing personal details without permission, and lax in not offering an apology to the correspondent before Monbiot’s post – but he did, in the end, acknowledge this and offer a form of apology.
- About the integrity of the MP – loads (possibly).
I’ve written to my MP on a few occasions when I’ve felt strongly enough to do so. It’s kind of fun – you get letters back stamped with the House of Commons logo (which is also on the envelope), and often you will get several replies (since the MP will probably forward your letter on to someone else, since he or she doesn’t know the answer).
Certainly if my MP had passed my personal details on to a newspaper without my permission I would be extremely annoyed, and would do whatever I could to encourage people not to re-elect him or her. That is a clear breach of trust.
- About the science – nothing.
For those that are not personally involved, move on and ignore it (as both Monbiot and Delingpole should have done).
Image from jamesdelingpole.com
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