Thursday, June 19, 2008

Burnham's Got Too Big For His Boots

Liberty director, Shami Chakrabarti, is threatening to sue cabinet minister, Andy Burnham, who she says "set out to smear" her  and former Conservative MP, David Davis. Writing in the New Labour 'magazine', Progress, Burnham, said he found it "very curious in the man who was, and still is I believe, an exponent of capital punishment, having late-night, hand-wringing, heart-melting phone calls with Shami Chakrabarti."

The innuendo, said Chakrabarti, was perfectly clear.

Too right it was! This New Labour cabinet minister deserves all he gets. What a plonker! 

Who does he think he is? A stringer for a student rag? A blogger on an ego-trip? No, he's a government minister for goodness sake. 

A spokesman for Burnham is reported as saying he had not meant any offence. But that's not the point. 

Davis is a senior Conservative, a former shadow home secretary and a Conservative candidate in a by-election. Chakrabarti is the darling of the liberal left and a human rights activist. Doesn't the fool realise that she knows a thing or two about civil law. 

And what about the plonkers over at Progress

This is a published magazine. Does it have an editor and a sub? Didn't they hear even a little alarm bell? Couldn't they see a libel action staring them in the face? This was not even innocent innuendo. This is a serious allegation. A slur on the private lives of two public people. 

Hasn't anyone heard of 'running it past the lawyers just to be on the safe side'?

Hasn't anyone had to wait for ages while the duty lawyer goes through the copy line by line, weighing up the risks of publishing against the cost of any libel action? 

Are they journalists or just a bunch of New Labour kids playing at magazines and politics?

Here's some free advice for Chakrabarti. Take Burnham to the cleaners by all means but you should also go after the magazine owners and editors. It was they, not Burnham, who published the article. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How did Burnham know about the "late night phone conversations"?.

Has he made it up and smeared without evidence, or is it political use of government phone taps on an MP, which sounds like a potential criminal offence?