A final word on Tom Harris, MP
I really wish Tom Harris was not am MP. More particularly, I wish he wasn’t a Labour MP, because he brings my party into disrepute.
This morning he has had published an article on Labour Uncut. He should be ashamed of it, but he won’t be.
In this article, he uses a cursory apology for his wrong and stupid knee-jerk reaction to the Norway massacres (a matter he confines to the first four brief paragraphs of a 24 paragraph opinion piece) to launch an utterly baseless, straw man attack on ‘the left’, happily suggesting that:
[T]he Norwegian terrorist, Breivik, seems to share the same ignorance about the difference between “islam” and “islamism” as many on the left.
Here’s my response as a comment to Harris’ odious article (grammar tidied up slightly):
No Tom, the article would have been much better ending at the end of paragraph 4.
Using an apology as a staging post for an attack on a ‘straw man’ left, just as Dan Hodges did at the New Statesman (though you at least go for rank generalisations rather than deliberate misquotation) simply makes your initial stupidity look cynical.
Most of the left is NOT ignorant about the distinction between Islam and Islamism. Just repeating via blogs and twitter that they are ignorant of same simply reinforces my opinion of you, specifically, (i.e. not extrapolated to the whole of the Labour right) as someone who is little more than a vainglorious attention-seeker.
Tom Harris is, in many respects, little more than an internet troll. Yet the fact that he is an elected member of parliament, and therefore commands a good deal of media attention, means that his views have to be challenged rather than ignored.
I can only hope that the Labour members of Glasgow South constituency will have regard for the way he has brought the party’s name into disrepute, as they consider their options for automatic re-selection (or not) of their parliamentary candidate (I don’t know if there will be any constituency changes to complicate the matter).
Harris may be a decent constituency MP, of course, and naturally members may hold him in high enough regard to reselect him on that basis. That’s fair enough, but at the very least I hope there will be enough of a kickback to remind him that, while he is an MP, he should not be overly focused on promoting his post-MP Mail on Sunday columnist career (or whatever right-wing rag seeks his endorsement in return for the assuaging of his Liddle-like notoriety lust).