There is, however, another reason for not engaging further. I note some of the rather offensive comments on Tim’s blog. I am quite sure neither Dennis or I would allow such ad hominem attacks, all unfounded. But Tim comes from a very different part of the political and, might I say it, social spectrum. Tim is a clever chap, I will not dispute it. There is, however, something very unpleasant about his methods. He tries to engage as a reasonable person on this blog, and then goes back to his own blog, hurls abuse and waits for his sycophants to come back with ad hominem, crude and sometimes blatantly inappropriate comments, all of which, I am sure, fuel his ego, but more sinisterly, fit into a pattern of political behaviour most commonly associated with the far right. The BNP work in this way, for example. I’m not suggesting Tim has anything to do with them, or their racist opinion, but Nick Griffin also seeks to appear reasonable in public debate, but relies upon working his audience of thugs behind-the-scenes and in his own domain to secure his support.
The object of the aggression ( and it is much worse on some other sites whose authors have chosen to comment here in the past) is simple. It is to frighten people away from the debate to secure the space for the far right. This is the work of extremists.
I seek to work in the mainstream. No one in the mainstream would allow the type of comment, attack, or abuse that Tim Worstall allows onto his blog. As a result I am satisfied that he is an extremist working outside the mainstream of UK politics, but who has intention to undermine it.
It is why I have decided to ignore his comments from now on. It is why the mainstream needs to eliminate this type of attack, which also seeks to suppress debate on sites such as the Guardian’s comment is free, if only by overwhelmingly out-posting these people, and it is why we need to name the likes of Tim Worstall for the extremists they are.
No doubt Tim will have a lot of fun abusing this. I can live with that. Someone has to name him (and his like) as a threat to democratic debate. I do.
There we have it, right from the horse’s mouth. Tim Worstall is a threat to democratic debate.
And all because Obnoxio has a potty mouth.
Excuse me while I go and write that piece that The Guardian’s Comment is Free has just commissioned from me.