Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Email from Matt - the threat

Hi Tim,

Just to add to what I said yesterday, I think it would be a serious error of judgement to go in with anyone other than the very best people who understand and know the political turf and who have been doing this for years.  
(struggling to find much evidence of much success lobbying MP's)

Experience is critical as is message delivery. Putting it bluntly you have no mandate and don’t represent any organisation and would be there as individual fathers which allows politicians to dismiss you on the basis that ‘every case is different.’  
(I don't have a mandate?  I have as much mandate as the next father who has been screwed by the courts.  As for not representing any organisation - that was because he had killed it 10 days earlier)

I would be extremely disappointed if the meeting was not rearranged to include Michael Cox and if possible Nick Langford who CAN deliver a succinct, punchy message in minimum time with maximum effect.

Opportunities can wait – there should be no rush to squander them.

I think that if you ignore people like Coxy you will do yourself immense damage in the longer term with the future plans for the fathers movement such as people’s ability to trust you and your judgement given the meeting was rearranged without consulting them and now you are taking somebody else with you, again without consultation.  
(I was not aware that I needed permision to lobby an MP - please bear in mind this email was sent to me AFTER Matt had left!)

If you want to play a part in the big picture these guys have to be consulted and included. However, don’t take our advice, after all, what do we know?

Don’t respond to me as I’ll be away for the rest of the week but feel free to liaise with Nick.



PS I see that after wanting me there, you never mentioned it yesterday.  
(I had wanted him there, but this was before he had closed F4J.  Now I was struggling to take him seriously.  Not only that but the meeting had been rearranged at short notice.  I considered the meeting important and with the party conference coming up, it needed to happen now and not later.  Please note: I got this meeting because I thought it would help not just me, but everyone in the same boat. It was certainly not out of any malice, as it has been painted)  I hadn't mentioned him being there because Coxy had told me the day before that Matt couldn't make it on the new date.