Truly, politics is showbiz for the ugly

A mother-of-two whose “sunbathing selfie” was hijacked by a tabloid newspaper to help snare Brooks Newmark in a sex scandal has insisted the MP had nothing to be ashamed of.

Charlene Tyler, 26, told The Telegraph she was upset that a photograph of her in a bikini was used as part of a fake Twitter account in the name of “Sophie Wittams”.

Miss Tyler said it was “quite wrong” The Sunday Mirror had copied her photograph without her consent.

She expressed concern for Mr Newmark and insisted that he had not acted improperly by sending an intimate photograph of himself to the fake “Sophie”, whom he believed was twenty-something Conservative activist.


It’s the
sort of thing a rock guitarist might do. There’s a fan out there whose adulation is such that she’s just gagging to drop her knickers for him. And thus the ugly middle aged bloke in office. There’s a political groupie so enamoured of power that she wants to come up for a no strings shag.

Politics just is showbiz for the ugly.

30 comments on “Truly, politics is showbiz for the ugly

  1. It’s the sort of thing a rock guitarist might do.

    I don’t know. Someone from Take That perhaps. Not a real rock star. I can’t imagine Keith Richards doing this.

    If only because so many girls want to sleep with him. There was, rumour has it, of girls willing to offer a no-strings-attached blow job to someone of his stature. He doesn’t have to act out the fantasy on line because he lived it.

    This is more something a boring middle management office dweller would do – so little sex in their lives that they really really need to believe this one was real. I mean, how many actual stars have got caught this way? That sad little git from Eastenders. Anyone else?

    The other question is what is the difference between this sort of entrapment – using real people’s photos it seems – and phone hacking?

  2. Am I so old that my assumption, that one’s fantasies are kept inside one’s head and that propriety in one’s actions is a good idea?

  3. Ugly rock and showbiz stars also get the groupies, so never understod the “showbiz for ugly people” jibe at politics.

  4. The difference this and horrible, evil entrapment and phone hacking? The absence of Newscorp of course. Because that is an evil fascist organisation that does and says evil things like “Vote Conservative”; the Mirror is incapable of being evil.

  5. Remember boys and girls, this is a Conservative government. I know this because someone told me.

    I have personal and unpleasant experience of HMRC bungling and incompetence. Allowing them to grab even more money means they will be even lazier and more incompetent. Why even make a token effort when you can just loot bank accounts?

  6. @ SMFS

    There’s nothing inherently wrong with increasing what can be recovered through the tax code. Like they manage to mention at the end of the piece, the ability has been there for 70 years. They’re just upping the limit so more people can pay that way… which is usually seen as a good thing for the taxpayer.

    Personally I never pay my bill through my tax code, and HMRC have never tried to force me to do so.

  7. The hypocrisy of politicians is breathtaking. If ‘we’ object to the surveillance state, their response is, “If you’ve done nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear.” Now, a bunch of them want to complain about the Mirror sting…

    Maybe we would drop seeing them as grubby chancers if they stopped behaving like, well, grubby chancers.

  8. Miss Tyler, from Boston, Lincs, said: “I think grown adults can do whatever they like as long as both of them are over the age of consent.

    “I don’t think it’s something to resign over.”

    I agree. However gross stupidity is a resigning issue. And so is hypocrisy, but I’m not sure if he is a hypocrite on these issue, but being a Tory I wouldn’t be surprised.

    O/T but I see the Tories are now playing in to Ritchie’s hands by scrapping the 55% tax on pension pots that got paid in tax free.

  9. I feel sorry for Brooks Newmark.

    How gauche to get caught in a hetetosexual political sex scandal in 2014.

    The poor bastard didn’t even get any sex out of it, he merely sent pictures of his wrinkly knob hanging out of his pyjamas in a heartbreakingly pathetic moment of middle aged madness.

    And this ain’t journalism:

    The Twitter profile was used to contact a series of prominent politicians, deploying flattery and flirting in an attempt to lure male MPs into communicating with the fictional woman.

    This is just trolling.

    Note this Glenda Slagg piece in The Mirror:

    “Brooks Newmark lied to his wife – what stops him from lying to voters?”

    Sweetheart, no man stays happily married for very long unless he learns how to lie to his wife. You ladies don’t want men to tell you what we really think. You want us to confirm what you think, but in a deeper voice.

  10. Traditionally the reason for resigning in such a case would be fear of blackmail. Not sure that’s directly relevant here since the beans have been spilt over the national press… but does show a certain vulnerability to blackmail at least. I do wonder how many more sophisticated scammers (not necessarily targeting MPs in particular) or intelligence agencies (who may well be) are playing the same game.

  11. Imcidentally – this was not a very sophisticated scam at all. Stealing someone else’s display pic is rank amateur stuff. Anyone who wants to deploy a basic litmus test for “am I dealing with a genuine person on the internet?” only needs to perform a reverse image search and the truth will be revealed.

    That’s a vital question for anyone remotely concerned with their own privacy and security to ask. After all, http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Internet,_nobody_knows_you're_a_dog

    I’m astonished that a chap can get promoted to ministerial rank and nobody in the civil service or police or (counter) intelligence has given him a lesson in basic internet security.

    Perhaps it’s a case of “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing” which is why they didn’t. More sophisticated scammers or spies wouldn’t use reverse searchable images (you can make it harder to reverse search with some cropping and editing but at the very high end you can hire an obscure – unrecognizable to the general public – model for private pictures) so would fool such basic checks.

    Another quick eyeball check – do facebook or Twitter contacts appear genuine (eg clear evidence of a real relationship like same surname for family, several from same town, uni or employer, no obvious fake or blank profiles)? – is equally fallible if a sophisticated artist or simply a hacked profile is at work. False sense of security is dangerous.

    I’ve even heard of scammers who fool the more sophisticated test of “webcam with them to prove they’re who they say they are” – just stream a prerecorded video of the same model you used pics of, looped if necessary. I suspect at the very highest level the video can be made to eg cut to a bit where the woman is typing, or laughing, based on cues from the conversation (X is typing; lol). Wouldn’t be so hard to do and would look much more natural – the jumps would be concealed quite well on a jerky connection. The prerecorded loop is apparently now a basic scammer tool, I’d be surprised if something more sophisticated isn’t used against higher value targets.

  12. MyBurningEars –

    Geez. You practically have to be a GCHQ spook before you can safely post pictures of your knob on the internet these days.

  13. Steve – even if talking to someone who is genuinely who they say they are, you still wouldn’t know what they were going to do with the pics. Hence it’d only be a riskless idea to do so if there’s literally nothing nefarious they could do with said pics that would bother you.

    My surprise in this case is that the chap, who had lots of downside risk as so much to lose, was caught out by someone who obviously wasn’t who they said they were and whose purposes were therefore clearly nefarious.

  14. “Brooks Newmark lied to his wife – what stops him from lying to voters?”

    Don’t we all work from the assumption nowadays that pols are lying to the voters from day one anyway, so any lying of a personal nature is hardly unexpected?

    Indeed surely a more unexpected headline would be ‘Lying politician manages to be faithful to his wife’?

  15. MyBurningEars – true. I’m surprised (well, not really, but I remain slightly incredulous at real world examples) that an intelligent fiftysomething man who had managed to earn a huge personal fortune could be so bloody stupid.

    It’s like something out of “The Thick of It”. I hope Dave sent The Fucker after him.

    Jim – I suspect Ms. Slagg is being disingenuous.

  16. Fuckwit starlet puts pics of their naughty bits on the internet, shocked to discover everyone else gets to see them too.

    Fuckwit politician sends pics of his naughty bits over the internet, shocked to discover them published so everyone else gets to see them too.

    Compare and contrast the reactions.

  17. I despair of a Conservative Association that adopted as a candidate someone who claimed that his Christian name was “Brooks”.

  18. BiW

    None of the ‘fuckwit’ starlets ‘put their pictures on the internet’. At least, not in the sense that you imply. Their photo’s were backed up, and someone hacked their accounts. So if they are fuckwits for that, then if your bank account is hacked, through no fault of your own, then you’re a fuckwit for having online banking.

    They were victims of a crime, and shouln’t be blamed. Brooks Newmark is a victim of shitty journalism and of wanting to get his rocks off in an entirely legal and consensual way.. he shouldn’t be blamed for anything either.

  19. BiW

    If by ‘the internet’ you mean ‘everything that’s on a computer server connected the www’ then yes, indeed, that’s where those women put those pictures.

    Unless your point is that none of us should ever do something on a computer that we wouldn’t be happy to have shared with the universe, I’m not sure what it is.

    A more common interpretation of ‘putting [things] on the internet’ would be actually publishing them somewhere where people are supposed to go and look. Are you intentionally choosing a much wider definition because you feel like attributing blame for the pictures to the women themselves (and not to, say, the criminals who hacked them?) or, in spite of your cute little patronising note, do you not actually know that ‘the cloud’ and ‘the internet’ are, really, two different things.

  20. @ TTG
    They were worryingly naive to think that their cloud accounts were safe if some poor kid with Asperger’s syndrome who believes (a la X-files) that the US government is hiding evidence of flying saucers can hack the Pentagon.
    Pitiable rather than blameworthy.

  21. @John77

    They may also have had weak passwords. Most people should take more care over their online security, and maybe A-list slebs would be advised to spend a small portion of their considerable wealth to get advised on such things. But it doesn’t change the fact that they were victims of crime, and it’s wrong for people to blame them for that.

    Otherwise, what message is being sent out? Anyone who uses online services is at fault if someone illegally compromises them? That puts a hell of a spanner in the modern economy!

  22. You now know why politicians are evasive and untrusting. Because the great public lets them be trapped by some sleezy journalist.
    I like the assumption you all seem to have that sex is reserved for juveniles.
    An old wrinkly weighted down with gold is far more attractive than some young hopeful lothario. In the real world.

  23. The Thought Gang – “There’s nothing inherently wrong with increasing what can be recovered through the tax code.”

    That is not what they have done though, or at least it misses the real problem. I don’t mind the Inland Revenue taking money that is owed. I object, deeply, to the State deeming itself to have the power to decide, on their own, that I owe them money and then for them to be able to take it without recourse to a Court. If they are going to take my money the least they can do is prove that I owe it.

    “Like they manage to mention at the end of the piece, the ability has been there for 70 years. They’re just upping the limit so more people can pay that way… which is usually seen as a good thing for the taxpayer.”

    A Conservative is usually defined as someone who opposes the injustices of current policy but is fine with the injustices of past policy. I don’t think more people will pay that way – or if they do that is a very bad thing. Because presumably they are already stealing all the money they can from everyone they think owes them. Now they can just steal more.

    Which for a lot of people will be a real hardship. Taking £17,000 quid from most people and then not giving it back without a long and expensive Court case is out of reach for those people who really need that £17,000. It is vile policy.

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