Thursday, 14 July 2016

It's not fair

Today is my birthday and the cosmos has bought me The Apocalypse, at least politically. I've been chairing panels at the British Comparative Literature Association's annual conference. It goes like this:

Beep: Happy Birthday
Beep: Another Lizard Creature has been put in charge
(20 minutes of erudite high-minded discussion of literary matters by clever people)
I say something dumb
Beep: Beelzebub is now Minister for Baby-Eating
I clumsily introduce the next genius to talk about things I haven't read.
(Another 20 minutes of intellectual exploration).
I hope fervently that someone else has better questions than the ones I've written down in case of embarrassing silence
Beep: New Environment Minister says 'I'm against it. The deforestation starts tomorrow'.

And so on, ad infinitum. 

Yesterday I watched the Cabinet Appointments and wondered if Theresa May is trolling us. It's the auto-satirising government. For instance, not long ago she posed in this t-shirt (sorry to start by discussing a female PM's clothing but this time it is relevant.

This occasioned the Telegraph to ask:

Well, maybe. But one of her first appointments was David Davis, who ran his election campaign based on a Page Three-style pun. So I doubt it. 

As to the rest: let's just remember that the Foreign Secretary once referred in a speech to 'picanninnies' with 'watermelon smiles' and claimed that black people had lower IQs than whites, campaigned against immigration while omitting to mention his American birth and citizenship, was fired from one newspaper for faking quotes and was recorded helping a friend organise a beating over a business dispute.

Oh yes, he also published a comic novel about suicide bombers. It's called Seventy Two Virgins and it is quite, quite racist. All the Arabic characters have hooked noses, which gives you a rough idea of Boris's literary abilities.

 He also thinks that the ban on fox-hunting puts the Labour party at the moral level of Nazi Germany and Saddam hussein's Iraq.

What a day to be alive.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You should read the 2002 Telegraph article in which he refers to 'picaninnies' with 'water-melon smiles':

It's clear he is using satire here to skewer Blair's neo-imperialist pretensions.

That said, he does come out with a lot of guff - mostly to wind up Guardian readers and get attention.