Monday, 19 December 2011

Pure admiration

I've a certain sneaking regard for David Cameron's sheer effrontery. It takes a special kind of person to brazenly come up with things like his 'Christianity Rules OK' speech at the weekend, while not acknowledging a) all the incredibly bloody bits and b) that his own principles clash in almost every regard with those of Jesus. For me, as a Catholic Atheist, Jesus is a cheery lefty: likes a glass of wine, thinks we should all get along. For the Tories, he apparently commands halving benefits to disabled children, being rude to Germans and waving nuclear weapons at people. I guess we're all selective readers…

This is Martin Rowson's reaction to the Cameron speech. It reminds me of the 1980 US Presidential election, in which Reagan won the religious vote, despite never darkening the door of a church if he could avoid it, while his opponent Jimmy Carter was a practising Baptist pastor. Reagan knew - as does Cameron - that seeming religish played better than actually being religious. Cameron knows that the Daily Mail's readers want to imagine a land of church bells and village fetes, and so he conjures up this Betjemanesque image while taking cash from the usual bigots and hypocrites, such as Stephen Green: chairman of HSBC Bank and an ordained minister… Where to start with that one?

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