Blog 9 From Outer Space
Eat, And Libel
It’s a hard thing to have principles, especially when you’re only pretending to have them. recent events have thrown up two wonderful examples of why you’re always better off being yourself.
I was going to feature the Liberal Democrat MP Sarah Teather. If you were paying any attention at all about ten days ago you might remember that Ms Teather (oh she’s a Ms, trust me) announced to The Observer that she was outraged at her party for backing the Tories’ proposed cap on welfare. She said her relationship with the junior coalition partner was broken. Adopting the near tears façade so beloved of sex tape distributors and serial adulterers the world over, she elaborated.
“It was the moment of realising that my own party was just as afraid of public opinion as the Labour Party. Something did break for me that was never, ever repaired,” she snuffled through a hankie, whilst perusing the Guardian jobs page for suitable pocket lining opportunities to tide her over until she blew Westminster and the real bucks started rolling in. Bravely continuing as the website buffered, she said: “It took me some time before I began to communicate with Nick Clegg. I couldn’t even be angry. I was utterly desolate when he said some immigrants should be asked to pay a £1,000 returnable “bond” when requesting a visa.”
In keeping with her long held anti-racist stance she then described the day the policy was announced as “a black day”, which is of course the standard politically correct language that is drilled into anyone who wishes to fight the unconscious prejudices that hold people of colour back in this country. Yeah.
So strongly does she believe in these deeply held beliefs that she handed in her notice immediately. Her two years’ notice. Until 2015 she will be suckling at the public teat, and you know how hard people work when they’re in their notice period. Yeah, that.
Now that would have been it, the nadir of the hypocrisy that I would have railed against to you. Then I would have gone back to something about goat sex or what appears to be my standby, rape.
Then Russell Brand decided to chip in.
Now Russell doesn’t normally feature on my radar, apart from when the phrase ‘childish preening Spinal Tap extra Essex shitcunt’ is uttered. I have no idea if he’s any good at stand-up comedy, but he seems to be doing ok on the circuit. I have seen all his films though, and frankly how he leaves the house not wearing a disguise after Arthur is beyond me. When he does slither out he dresses like the love child of a groupie for The Darkness and a Pirate. When Noel Gallagher greeted him on the red carpet of the recent GQ awards he asked him if Rod Stewart knew he was going through his jumble. Faced with that Brand tells us, in his pitiable Guardian column which purports to tell ‘his side of the story’, he felt he had to up the ante as the banter flowed. Hence his getting up and announcing that Hugo Boss, the evening’s sponsors, had a case to answer regarding their involvement in Hitler’s war effort. As he droned on about how it became an object lesson in how the powers that be protect themselves, I started to muse on what, apart from fine tailoring, they had contributed to the third Reich that had him in such a flap.
I can’t believe it’s not schmutter, I thought to myself.
First he describes how his comment was met with a mixture of nervous laughter and silence, presumably from the people who had invited him and were giving him an award, and were perhaps a tad miffed to be accused of colluding with gassing kids at Auschwitz when none of them were born when it happened, and most of them weren’t even German. Not content with that non bombshell he then goes on to lambast the politicians who turned up, wondering what they were trying to sell the public. In the next breath he explains that he was there because he was advised it would be good publicity for his upcoming tour.
Of course, he has ‘gone there’ before (Sachsgate), and knows his place. He is the faux rebel, the dangerous but manageable face of corporate cynicism. Everyone has won here. GQ, Russell Brand, and Hugo Boss have been in the papers (which is all these awards are about at the end of the day), and Noel Gallagher has again shown himself to be one of the most effortlessly witty people alive. My issue with all this pretend rebellion is simple really.
I’m pretty sure that when the invite dropped onto his doormat he must have known who Hugo Boss were, and as a consequence had an opinion on their WW2 activities. At this point a genuinely principled person would have instructed his people to decline, and found a way of leaking it to the papers and spinning it as an heroic line in the sand. Even after that, when being told it would be a good way of gaining attention (and therefore ticket sales), he could have still refused. After all, these are only his advisers, they only prompt, they don’t order.
Instead he toddled along like a good boy, ate the vol au vents (or thigh of unicorn braised in leopard’s fanny batter, I genuinely have no idea what’s served at these things), said his ‘provocative’ line (which is only provocative if you think they ushered people onto the trains bound for Poland, rather than knocking up a great hidden button), wrote his pseudo-intellectual self-serving mumbo jumbo, and watched as people remembered who he was and that, ooh, tickets were on sale.
With Nelson Mandela on his last legs it’s instructive to watch these bozos at it. Your rational brain knows that they’re playing at it, but you can’t help but feel a pang of anger when they use you so. Then you hear that Madiba has been into hospital again, and sacrifice for real principle is revealed to you again. Next year when these awards roll around again watch how many publicity hungry pillocks conveniently forget Brand’s ‘incendiary’ remarks, and accept an invite from what are now well known Nazi sympathisers to get boozed up and schmooze with Stephen Fry.
If he’d just said ‘look, I made a joke and it went too far’ and held his hands up you wouldn’t worry. The fact he smashed out an article which implied that he only found out what they’d done for Hitler as he was going up to the podium says all you need to know about his depth of feeling for the cause, and ultimate lack of bottle.
He’s not Bill Hicks; he’s not even Bill Cosby really.
“What a catalyst you turned out to be/loaded the guns then you run off home for your tea…”