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Friday 29 April 2011

Toby Jug Royal False Equivalence

While the happy couple prepare for their honeymoon – as if they’ll get any peace and quiet once the Fourth Estate find out about it – the interpretation of today’s Royal Wedding continues. And pitching in to the fray has been not very good Maily Telegraph blogger Toby Young with a characteristically poorly argued, but freshly steaming, pile of stuff.

Tobe thinks that “It’s taboo to try and score political points on public occasions such as these”, and then does so anyway. Perhaps with one eye on the Rally For Cuts that he will be joining next month, and knowing that not very many will bother to turn up for it, he has decided to paint today’s wedding as a response to the March For The Alternative, although it is nothing of the sort.

Young manages to miss the obvious point: many ordinary folk, like those who marched on March 26, will be celebrating the Royal nuptials today, especially as it’s a bank holiday. The idea that the two events would draw mutually exclusive audiences is plain daft: there’s a love of all things Royal in many working class people. Tobe shows he doesn’t understand them.

The false equivalence doesn’t stop at misreading the makeup of the crowd, though: Young equates the event to the Coronation in 1953, except of course that this isn’t a Coronation, and his suggestion that it will translate into popularity for Young Dave and his jolly good chaps is utter tosh.

Tobe’s history looks shaky, too: the monarchy’s “soaring popularity under Queen Victoria” didn’t continue for long after Albert passed away. By the time Edward VII had succeeded to the throne, he knew that he needed to be seen rather more than his late mother, who had spent an increasing amount of time out of public view. Edward gave the monarchy back its purpose, and today’s Royals follow his lead.

And then Young manages to call today’s wedding a state occasion, before saying (correctly) that it isn’t one. I do hope, for the sake of the Telegraph’s credibility, that they don’t have to pay him to write this drivel. But then, if Toby Young has figured out how to make it pay, one cannot begrudge him his returns.

After all, if Littlejohn is worth paying serious money, anyone can rake it in.

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