The New Machiavelli: Why McAlpine cannot sue the Interwebz
Suggestive of or characterized by expediency, deceit, and cunning.
a cunning, amoral, and opportunist person, esp a politician
For the past fortnight we have sat and we have watched Lord McAlpine paraded through polite society to standing ovations, his nationwide charm offensive with his wee Scottish patter sat upon his high horse like Little Lord Fauntleroy to claim the moral high-ground and attempt to halt the growing public outcry regarding institutionalised abuse of children by muddying the waters and setting false trails.
Then again, it was only recently that Jimmy Savile was given a state funeral and three tribute television shows for being the most notorious paedophile in British criminal history.
In his books, Alistair MachiAvelipine made it quite clear that he was in favour of retaining iron age structures and paradigms, that cunning and deceit and game theory was to remain the order of the day and ‘new age’ thought forms were to be refuted. Although primarily a vanity publication and a ‘hidden in plain site’ political battle-plan his book ‘The New Machiavelli: The art of politics in business’ has had enough promotion to have filtered into institutions and influenced their philosophies. It is all too easy to mislead the weak minded. He also had the ear of the British PM for 15 years.
The following is a list of pitfalls Lord MachiAvelipine will encounter should he get his day (or make that decades) in court irrespective of his alleged involvement in child abuse and the allegations that were withdrawn by Steve Messham.
Clearly the British State and legal system do not regard child abuse as a serious offence. This is made evident by the fact that 40% of convicted child abusers do not go to prison. It follows, that to besmirch someone with accusations of child abuse, at least in the eyes of the state and legal profession, should be treated equally as lightly.
Decent members of the public think differently however and understand the seriousness of the crime and the gravity of being accused of such crimes so there is an intense disconnect between rulers and ruled. Because of the noble maxim of the presumption of innocence and in light of Messham withdrawing his accusations (although subterfuge and intimidation is well documented in cases like this) we are not accusing McAlpine of any specific abuses without proof. We are however criticising him for the way he seems to have taken the law into his own hands and has begun issuing writs like confetti at a wedding and dishing out his own self-styled version of summary justice.
If only the law were so nimble and decisive when dealing with abusers then perhaps Britain wouldn’t be plagued with daily horrors. If only abuse victims were compensated so generously.
Statutory limit has expired for him to sue Skallywag magazine, Icke and others
Strength in numbers – he can’t possibly sue the mainstream media, twitterverse, blogosphere and anyone and everyone on the interwebz at the same time
Vultures and Bluebirds
Following on from this point, the global nature of the internet means different legal systems apply based on the location of servers and residence of bloggers. Although the UK government and legal system is attempting to globalize libel law, they would need to hunt people to the four corners of the globe to round up everyone. The potential for miscarriages of justice is immense. But if you notice in the midst of one of Britain’s periodic fits of moral outrage regarding McAlpine’s besmirchment no one has stopped to question the due process or lack of it. McAlpine’s flock of legal eagles have been thrusting bits of paper into peoples faces and getting them to sign it there and then when legal advice should be sought first. They are expecting people to incriminate themselves.
His legal team will have a hard time tracking down Anonymous twitter and blog users. Should draconian measures be implemented on Twitter and elsewhere then more and more people will become anonymous to protect their freedom of speech. The more the government tighten their grip, the more star systems will slip through their fingers.
If he persists in his ‘witch-hunt’ he risks further court appearances battling ISPs and assorted Internet Giants such as Google, Twitter, Yahoo!, Blogger and the rest. Because his actions just happen to have coincided with a campaign launched by Google, EFF and others to protect net freedom…everywhere.
The fact that he failed to sue Skallywag magazine 20 years ago and Icke 12 years ago meant the public referred to these allegations as they were considered as being unchallenged, in the public record in book and magazine form and therefore presumed to be factual unless shown to be otherwise; you cannot be sued for incorrect information that was widely believed to be true – you can only be sued if it is deliberately defamatory and malicious with nothing to back it up. To go after thousands of twitter users who see the service as an informal chatroom, a coffee morning usually just between friends and not sue Icke, who has repeated his accusations, as well as one of the primary sources for the rumours, those behind Skallywag magazine, is ridiculous. As far as we know he has yet to issue either with writs.
Merely speculating as to whom the alleged paedophile who was to be named on Newsnight was going to be is not the same thing as speculating on his guilt. Twitter got it right. The BBC journalists and Common Purpose trained and self appointed ‘Media Standards Trust ‘ and ‘Bureau of Investigative Journalism’ got it wrong.
A court case would dredge up aspects of his life that he wouldn’t want aired in a courtroom, especially not in a case involving paedophilia accusations and have questions he would need to answer under oath – i.e. what he knew about Morrison and the rest of the paedo ring in Downing St.
He would need to answer questions on the collection of ‘Fashion and Erotica’ material, his elitist porn stash, which includes pictures of young girls in a state of undress by Ovenden, whose work is on a prescribed list of known paedophilia activities
Inconsistencies with his brother’s statement that he was brought up never to tell lies would conflict with his 15 years in the Thatcher government which was mired in sleaze and his authorship of ‘The New Machiavelli’ which appears to detail the precise method he has used in this case to manipulate the public.
This is why he is using intimidation, threats and pious self-righteousness to fool his detractors into settling out of court. To be fair to him, he and his cohorts have, by the looks of it, executed a masterful bait and switch that would have made The Prince proud. He should write a book on how to manipulate people with cunning and deceit. We forgot. He already has.
This is why he is so keen to settle out of court…
McAlpine’s actions have little to do with protecting his reputation. He would have sued Icke and Skallywag years ago if it was. His failure to do so created the long standing rumours on the internet.
This is a premeditated assault on the freedom of the internet that will not be tolerated. McAlpine’s failure to understand the internet will see to that.
Having said that, netizens should not abuse their rights of freedom of speech and should be more discerning and should strive to remain ‘in honour’ at all times.
We are yet to discover the full truth of the Messham-McAlpine family saga which is only a small part of a much larger picture. We do not as yet know whether McAlpine is a paedophile or not so are obliged to presume his innocence whilst the facts are collated. What we do know is that other members of his family, who he has himself fingered. were involved in paedophile rings that stalked North Wales Care Homes. We do know he was surrounded by paedophiles as part of Thatcher’s inner circle. And we do know that he was an avid collector of Ovenden whose name appears on a prescribed list of works of a paedophilic nature. At the very least he should be questioned, under oath, as to what he knew and when as he is a key witness in both national and international investigations.
He has presented himself as such an honourable man and having become the toast of polite society he should be only too pleased to help with the inquiries. Thatcher’s cabinet and inner circle were a den of vipers by the sound of it yet we are supposed to chomp on the line that leads to the only honest one out of the lot being McAlpine – The New Machiavelli no less?
“The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it.” – John Gilmore, founding member of EFF
*disclaimer: This post is not offering legal advice, merely pointing out the potential difficulties McAlpine would face if cases were to go to court as has been pointed out by others which we tend to agree with.