When the loathsome Toby Young was finally prised away from his board position at the newly created Office for Students, it was clearly the revelations in both the London Student and Private Eye magazine about his attendance at the London Conference on Intelligence that had persuaded him to throw in his hand and leave the table. Tobes described this analysis as “balls”, so, given his record of dishonesty, that probably means it’s right.
Ben Bradley MP
And while Young has been lying low for a few days, after cobbling together an unconvincing apologia for Himself Personally Now, having failed to convince those repulsed at what was not his first foray into the world of eugenics, the Tory right has thrown up yet another supporter of “breeding out the thicks”. Unlike Tobes, this one could prove to be genuinely dangerous, as he is a sitting Tory MP.
Ben Bradley, who unexpectedly won Mansfield for the Tories last year, has been made a vice-chair of the party. Theresa May might come to regret that decision, after BuzzFeed revealed that he had been advocating vasectomy for the workless. The Guardian noted that Bradley had concerns about the lower orders breeding.
“A Conservative MP who has been appointed as a party vice-chairman once suggested that unemployed people should opt for free vasectomies rather than continuing to have children they could not afford to support … In a blogpost, Ben Bradley claimed that the country would be soon ‘drowning in a vast sea of unemployed wasters’ if workless families had four or five children while others limited themselves to one or two”.
He would have fitted right in with Joseph Goebbels. One could even imagine him being a minor participant at the Wannsee Conference. Bradley also claimed “There are hundreds of families in the UK who earn over £60,000 in benefits without lifting a finger because they have so many kids (and for the rest of us that’s a wage of over £90,000 before tax!)”, which also demonstrates his appetite for propaganda.
Guess who agrees with the Hon Member?
So what has he had to say for himself? Like Tobes and his pals, he wants us to believe that this is a mere “historic” episode, telling “I apologise for these posts. My time in politics has allowed me to mature and I now realise that this language is not appropriate”. Well, he made those comments in 2012, when already in his 20s.
The Labour-supporting Mirror is certainly not convinced, adding yet more embarrassing observations like “The now-deleted post was headlined ‘Give us the benefits ‘cap’ - before we all drown!’ … It was tagged with keywords including ‘chavs’ and ‘wasters’ [remember the Tories’ Activate group talking of “gassing chavs”?] … [Theresa May] was under huge pressure to sack him last night after his ‘repulsive’ comments emerged”.
Saying “I wrote it a long time ago when I was young and not really thinking it through” is not going to cut the mustard. The whole eugenics agenda is tied up with the ideological right. And that ideological right is increasingly influential in today’s Tory Party. Ben Bradley and Toby Young are mere tips of a much larger and nastier iceberg.
The Nasty Party never went away. It just became a whole lot nastier.