Priceless! Dorries rant: the Left is ‘dumbing down PANTO’ #IntellectualPanto

Tory MP Nadine Dorries is not exactly a stranger to ‘open mouth, insert foot’ moments on social media. Earlier this month, in a rush to defend Damian Green over pornography on the now-removed Cabinet minister’s computer, she tweeted an admission that all her staff have the password to her parliamentary computer, sparking a panicked email from parliamentary IT support staff to all users about the importance of keeping passwords  secret.

This morning, however, Ms Dorries managed to excel herself with a remarkable rant against ‘the left’ that triggered a tsunami of derision, not least because it demonstrated that Ms Dorries apparently considers panto an intellectual art form:

dorries panto.png

The tweet was an instant hit, although not in a good way, with a very high ‘Ratio‘ of comments to retweets  – a strong indicator, in Twitter terms, of a major ‘fail’.

And small wonder.

Ms Dorries managed to fit a rant of epic scale, containing no fewer than six smears against the left, all of them surprising to this particular lefty, into Twitter’s new limit of 280 characters – and included the priceless nugget that we are ‘dumbing down panto’, as if panto was an intellectual pursuit in the first place.

This particular claim was a particular focus of the hundreds of mocking responses to Ms Dorries’ tweet:


A personal favourite among the responses, a tough choice in a rich seam, derided the whole tweet rather than focusing on the panto pantomime, though – and the follow-ups to it were pretty damned fine, too:

field of f.png

However, a more serious point was also raised about the existence or otherwise of any actual evidence for the list of accusations, for example this tweet (with a very healthy ratio):

jos dorries.png

Nothing was forthcoming, so in case Ms Dorries had logged out of Twitter we emailed her to ask:

Dear Ms Dorries,

You tweeted this morning with a number of accusations against ‘the left’. Please provide by return examples for each of your claims, namely:

  • killing comedy
  • tearing down historic statues
  • removing books from universities
  • dumbing down panto
  • removing Christ from Christmas
  • suppressing free speech

At the time of publication, no response had been received.


The instinct of the right to point fingers at others for exactly its own tendencies is as well known as its lack of self-awareness and irony – and a source of amusement to the left-wingers whose sense of humour makes a mockery of the idea that the left is ‘killing comedy’.

Perhaps a #NadinesPanto hashtag with ideas for intellectual pantomimes is needed – tag @skwawkbox in your tweet and we’ll feature the best in a separate article.

Edit: #IntellectualPanto is also trending on Twitter so we’ll pick up the best of those as well.

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  1. Thant’s what happens when you wake up in the morning still suffering from the after effects of far too much Prosecco

  2. Like many others of her ilk mad Nad’s fears and failures are imaginary. Whereas the failures of Tory policies are real and confront us daily in hospitals, schools and on our streets where the homeless sleep.

  3. The left are ‘dumbing down panto’ , eh, ‘nade’?

    For ‘The left’ – read , ‘The left of the PLP’

    For ‘dumbing down’ , read: ‘not f***ing about like spolit kids’

    And for ‘panto’ , read: ‘At PMQ’s’

  4. It is completely understandable why both the Tories and the right wing of the Labour Party are sounding increasingly unhinged and desperate.

    They have lost the argument and can see the consensus shifting in front of their eyes in real time.

    Their pro-war, pro-privatisation and pro-austerity orthodoxy has been exposed as a scam which benefits the few at the expense of the many.

    Voters face the clearest choice in more than a generation. They can vote for the Tories to continue their failed austerity policy and give tax breaks for the rich, which will guarantee stagnant wages and increasing inequality.

    Alternatively, they can vote for a Labour government which will invest in our country’s infrastructure and in training and education, which will create economic growth and allow us to compete in the modern world.

    The Tories and their enablers on the right wing of the Labour Party understand this and they understand that the strategic vision Corbyn is offering the country is a four term programme.

    If Labour delivers in its first term the Tories will be out of power for 20 years.

    That possibility drives both the Tories and the Blairites completely insane.

    Too bad for them.

  5. Surely people who conflate “snowflakes” (or Hillary Clinton or identity politics, for that matter) with “the left” are guilty of propagating a particularly pernicious falsehood, implying that the former are exemplars of the latter, when they are in fact the opposite.

    Snowflakes are products of the group-thinking liberal right, unwittingly helping it to marginalise and then eradicate freedom of speech, even of thought.

    Put ’em in the (revolutionary) army, I say!

  6. ‘It will be music next’ , she opines. Yes, hopefully they’ll ruin favourite tory musicals like :-

    ‘The fiddler on the expenses’

    ”The lyin’ cow”

    ‘Breakfast at iain duncan smith’s’ (£39 – NO concessions)

    ‘Very poor for May’

    ‘The EU can (go) whistle’

    ‘The Witches of Eastwick, Maidenhead, and Mid-Befordshire’

    And many more…

  7. Word must be getting round in Tory circles that Labour are getting so far ahead under Jeremy Corbyn, that any slurs or smears, no matter how stupid must be heaped on them to stop the rot.

    The problem for them is that in the numbers game those with fewer supporters get overloaded by their opposition, as in the past when their media spin doctors reigned supreme, their lies and smears counted.

    Nowadays the boot is on the opposite foot, people have seen through the media and it only gains currency for the willfully blind or ignorant.

  8. Dorries is the epitome of dumbed-down pantomime … and unintended self description.

  9. “What a Boar”, I should say “Sow”!
    Her snout in muck and shit all daylong!
    Is it any wonder she’s lost the plot?

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