Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Nadine Dorries, hypocrisy and EMA

Nadine Dorries, MP is a busy woman. Alongside being an MP, she also spends a lot of time fucking up and refusing to apologise for it. Such fuck-ups have included:
(n.b. This is not an exhaustive list of her fuck-ups, but what I could remember off the top of my head in five minutes.)

Today, she struck another victory for self-awareness, sending out a tweet at approximately 4 p.m. that read "Teacher just emailed me to say that on EMA day, the kids go clothes shopping at lunch time and come back late and disrupt lessons".

Oh. Right. Stop the marches! Halt the protests! Some completely random person may or may not have emailed a self-confessed internet bullshitter saying something that accords with her view! Well, it must be true!

Sarcasm aside, how can anyone see this as anything other than a nasty, vindictive smear against children who claim EMA?

To hammer her anti-EMA point home, a short while later, she posted a second tweet, which said "We also have stdnts who are just at schl to be able to claim ema. They do not want to learn, talk though lessons, use their mobile phones".

This, on the day Parliament are to vote on whether to scrap the allowance or not.

Anthony Painter wrote at Left Foot Forward today about how scrapping the allowance will prove to be a very stupid cut to make. He makes some fantastic and fresh points, and this is a very informative article to read.

In another sparkling example of how much the Tories are in touch with reality, losing EMA means that many teenagers who receive it will have to get jobs to make up the shortfall in their income. This on the day it was also announced that the youth unemployment rate is 20.3%.

Saving EMA would cost about £500 million. This sounds expensive, but let's compare it to the £550 million proposed to be given in tax breaks to couples just for being married (my views on this here). What's more important - promoting education among disadvantaged youth, or giving middle-class people money they don't need, just for the monumental achievement of being married?

The reason I brought Nadine Dorries up wasn't just for her complete lack of tact, compassion or logic when sending those tweets earlier, I'd also like to point out that when she sent these tweets, she was supposed to be in the House of Commons debating the proposal to scrap EMA. People who receive EMA only get it if they have 100% attendance in the week. Dorries' estimated attendance at Parliament voting is around 85%, and she claimed £158,530 in expenses in 2008/09, on top of her basic MP's salary of £65,738.

At about 8 p.m., Dorries sent another tweet. This one read "To everyone.. my tweets re ema were not my words, they were the words of two heads of sixth form colleges". Yes Nadine, which you put on Twitter in order to portray EMA recipients as scroungers.

Personally, I'd like to see these emails, just to make sure they're not something she's made up to "illustrate her point".

I saw two tweets today that affected me as much as Dorries'. The first was from Seema Malhotra, saying "EMA =better grades for pupils in deprived areas = better degrees and jobs = better life chances = social mobility = better Britain". The second, I couldn't find the source for, but read "Why do I get EMA? Because there isn't enough money in my house. Why isn't there? 'cos my parents couldn't afford to go to college".

I couldn't agree more.


  1. Nice post. Just one tiny correction. No-one is saying that the "Hand of Hope" picture is faked. It's a genuine picture, it just doesn't show what the anti-abortionists claim that it shows.

    They say it shows the foetus reaching out to grab the surgeon's hand. The surgeon says that he placed the hand there to keep it out of his way.

  2. I realise that by writing the word 'fake', people may take me literally. I will edit the point for the sake of clarity.

  3. This blog unfortunately confuses political issues with Dorries' appalling behaviour and "professional" incompetence.

    Representing her as being under attack for supporting government policy only gives her a bolthole.

    Her ludicrous utterances undermine both the government and the Tories making her a liability to them and provide her greatest vulnerability.

  4. Yes I have read about this appalling woman before. With my limited vocabulary I would describe using the words can't far & king, though not necessarily in that order.

  5. It all confirms my view that the current government want us to return to the good old days of *Upstairs Downstairs* Everything they have done so far points to this.Denying young people from poorer families the EMA grant shows that they are not interested in helping them achieve. They need people to clean their houses don't they? I may start growing my forelock in readiness for tugging it as I watch the gentry bwankers go by

  6. @alison the removal of EMA between 2012 and 2014 was the Labour plan. So you can stop tugging your forelock.

  7. EMA is simply unaffordable. Why, its cost amounts to about one third of what RBS intends to reward its go-getting execs this year!In these straitened times, it is quite reasonable that the disabled, students, and the unemployed, make sacrifices to keep the super-rich topped up.Its all sound, economic, good sense.No Ethel it's not time for my straitjacket, I haven't had my Daily Mail yet.Ethel, put that tazer down..