Can anyone help explain why I feel compelled to watch these TV debates? It must be something to do with morbid curiosity; I wish I could break the habit. I’m not going to re-watch the latest torture vehicle, but I’ll take the words of Sarah Vine, Allison Pearson, Kate Hoey and Iain Dale even if his name does contain an extra i. (Or do we pronounce it Ee-ay-an) Fiona Bruce was appallingly biased. The audience was Momentum-heavy.
Anyway, the way the media encourages and inflames the baying mob has a chilling effect on free speech. Anyone in public life now needs to approach their every utterance with extreme caution. A society that dictates that lies must be accepted as truth and a man only has to say he’s a woman to make it so, albeit perhaps a ‘woman with a penis’, leaves many of us wondering if we’re alone in noticing that “the king is in the altogether.”
Of course the millennium generation or whatever they’re called, the ones who run things, won’t even know what I’m referring to - which reminds me of the BBC expert wheeled in to opine on two election videos ( the one featuring “Beattie” and the slick Momentum video that got into trouble for stealing content from Coca Cola.) He said “I had to Google the character (Beattie) as well as the actress”, (Maureen Lipman) whereupon it dawned on me that these woke young pundits have no understanding of even relatively recent popular culture, which almost explains why someone (other than Anne Marie Morris) - I forget who - got into trouble for “using the’n’ word”. It transpired that this terrible word occurred within the out-of-date idiom meaning "some fact of considerable importance that is not disclosed—something suspicious or wrong." This bonkers scenario is concomitant with the new rules concerning trans issues, whereby everyone has to go along with the Orwellian type convention that lies are truth, and if we transgress we’re toast, remorselessly gobbled up by the mob.
Boris has a choice. 1) Apologise for his past use of the terms ‘Watermelon Smiles, Picaninny, a new one on me “Tank-top Bum-boy’ and of course ‘letterbox and bank robber’, or 2) he digs in deeper and sheepishly defends these terms by providing context, none of which will be listened to let alone understood by the history-resistant mob.
Boris’s natural ability to express himself verbally in a colourful and cartoonesque way is part of his charm. Maybe it is his charm.
How can he explain that those ill-fated watermelon picanninies were part of his cynical and satirical response to being subjected to some crude propagandistic displays laid on by the organisers of a Commonwealth tour as described here about three years ago, by Rod Liddle.
I got Boris Johnson into trouble once, without meaning to. The two of us had been driven hither and thither across Uganda by Unicef in the back of an expensive Mercedes 4×4 to gaze at the fatuous projects they had delivered for the benighted natives. We had been chosen for the trip because we were perceived, rightly, to be unconvinced by the efficacy of some western foreign aid programmes and even less convinced — in my case, at least — by the UN.
Our chaperones were two humourless Scandinavian women who ferried us both from one remote village to the next: ‘Look, here we have built a women’s drop-in centre,’ one of them would remark proudly of a breezeblock edifice in some pitiful settle-ment which primarily needed a road, a school, some industry etc. But the Unicef women had an agenda and the Ugandans had bloody well better get on board with it. At each village the natives would be rounded up to meet us and explain how exceptionally grateful they were.
Shortly before we arrived at every stop, the Scandi harridans would smear thick layers of insulating cream on themselves, and then don rubber gloves and face masks. They urged us to do the same — there is bilharzia here, they said, and perhaps worse — but we declined. It seemed staggeringly rude. And so that is how these matrons greeted the natives each time — stepping out of an air-conditioned limo which cost the GDP of their entire country and shaking hands encased in rubber gloves because the black people are all diseased. And then lecturing them about women’s rights.
It eclipsed satire. This seemed to me racist, patronising and as fine a case of cultural neo-imperialism as you could ever wish to find. After we left one settlement and climbed back in our limo, Boris remarked, with acid on his tongue: ‘And so on to the next bunch of grinning piccaninnies.’ It was one of the most apposite statements I have ever heard; anti-racist in its intent, mocking the attitudes of the Unicef staffers and the purpose of this charade.
The left-wing press couldn’t care less. They want to see Boris as a racist and that’s the way they’ll see him. If they say it’s racist, then so it is.
As for the letterbox thing. Everyone will by now have seen the talking letterbox on QT. The one who hijacked the topic of antisemitism to rant at will, unimpeded by madam chairperson. This was one of those ‘you couldn’t make it up’ moments, but even worse was the way the panel and the audience took her side. Look at Chuka Umunna! What a creep!
Why didn’t anyone dare to ask the question “is this ridiculous garb in any way normal?” and “How can this letterbox be an English teacher?” or “Has this country gone completely off its rocker”
No-one would dare. The truth has departed.“How can I put my faith in a leader when that same leader likens me to a letterbox?”— BBC Question Time (@bbcquestiontime) November 21, 2019
This audience member, who is an English teacher, criticises Boris Johnson for previous comments he made about Muslim women in burkas. #bbcqt pic.twitter.com/yzswGBIl7J