Why though, is Iain Dale no longer a blogger? Because bloggers do not publicly announce their undying allegiance to all that is wrong with the ruling elite. That's why.
Dale puts his money where his mouth is. It is not merely, empathy. I would agree that empathy is ok. What is not OK is explicit, public, fiduciary support. Not only is Iain Dale out of step with the public, he is out of step with bloggers and his readers. He is not being "brave" or assertive or even "fair", he is being an arrogant, puffed up twat. How dare he sweep under the carpet the moral turpitude of the ruling classes? How dare he, with one little gesture, throw his lot in with those people who have sought, over the last few years, to feather their nests, by lying, conniving and cheating.
Iain Dale, in the time I have been a reader and commenter on his blog, has gone from being everyman to just another embryonic wannabe celeb, from the champion of the voiceless to just another mouthpiece for the status quo. Undoubtedly talented, he has squandered all my good feelings for him on this single act. He now resides in a lofty office block, overlooking Parliament. He has a personal gofer and probably a dozen people who tell him how the sun shines out of his arse.
Dale is not a blogger anymore. His blog is mostly now a puff for his show on LBC or Biteback Publishing. He even pays somebody else to do posts on his blog. He is cheek by jowl with Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, another egregious mouthpiece for the angst-ridden chattering classes.
He is not the first high profile blogger I have dumped from my reading list. Not that long ago, Tom Harris, the Scottish MP even had me on his banner list until I asked him to remove it, and I did so because his policy about comments was not, in my opinion, commensurate with free speech.
These guys won't worry if I don't read their blogs. Neither will it change their minds, but I will not waste my time on people who fuck with justice or truth. As for a comment in the last thread by Bob; I do visit blogs I don't agree with, all the time, but I rarely bother to leave comments. What I will not do is support those who support the political status quo. If you have to ask why, you don't belong here either.
Blogs are for dissenters, libertarians and those who believe in freedom, truth and justice. They are the Samizdat of the 21st Century. Blogs are change agents. The blogger should and indeed must, stand out from the Main Stream Media. Can you, hand on heart, tell me that Dale does that? In this issue alone, he is out of step with over 70% of the population, and 65% of Labour supporters. There are currently more than 80 comments on that thread and over 80 condemn his action. Does he not realise how out of step he is? No, because he long ago discarded all pretence of being one of us.
Today Iain Dale joined the political elite.If political bloggers are about anything, they are about challenging the sad state of British politics. Dale can no longer do that, for he is part of the problem, and has been for some time.
Guido Fawkes hasn't gone down that route, and a dozen others. If a story breaks (or does not because it has been spiked) who are you going to trust? You cannot trust Dale anymore for he has too many vested interests, and apparently they go as far as supporting nasty Labour MPs, so that is quite a long way. It's a sad day. But don't ask why I am not bothering with Iain Dale's Diary anymore, anymore than I bother with Nick Robinson's "blog". If you can't see why, you perhaps should ask yourself, who's side you are on.
(FYI. These days, my first port of call is the Spectator Coffee House. For a Mainstream Blog platform, you get a considerably wide berth for comments, a huge spectrum of bloggers and a proper, lively level of debate. That's if their notoriously unstable technical platform does not swallow your post.)
"Dale's made the unforgivable step of moving from an apologist for a single party to a shill for the Political Class." - Katabasis
Blogger was hijacked by people like you (Iain Dale) and Harris, and many others, who saw it as an easy entry to the web for their writing, but you and them are not bloggers but professionals who used the system to get a name and an audience. - Houdini