Another figure from the past who will be turning in his grave this morning is Edgar Wallace, the prolific crime writer in whose name an award is given that celebrates “writing or reporting of the highest quality”. Yesterday this gong was inexplicably handed to the Daily Mail’s unfunny and talentless churnalist Richard Littlejohn, who deigned to return from Florida specially to receive it.
Gongs, Guv? It's for dinner time, innit?!?
The Mail has characteristically lauded Dick as “brilliant” and “outstanding”, with the judges telling that “you can’t ignore him”, which is as true as if you left the back door open on a hot summer day, only to let in a wandering cat that shat on the mat and stank the place out. Here on Zelo Street, Littlejohn has indeed been hard to ignore, but not to the extent of urging that he gets an award for it.
Unless, of course, that award was for dishonest, intolerant and bullying hackery, laced with a whiff of intolerance and bigotry and topped off with a hint of antediluvian sexism. Take, for instance, his rant early last year about those who work in local Government, which I had to correct. Soon after that, I had to caution about the effect of his casual Islamophobia on ordinary folks.
Fast forward briefly to April and I caught Littlejohn telling whoppers about lawyers in an effort to kick Tone and Pa Broon. And the following month he was effing and blinding – literally – as he ranted about foreign aid. But both these events were put into the shade by his supremely dishonest slice of Europhobia about the “Arc Manche” which was fiction from start to finish.
But then August brought rioting, and Littlejohn was in his element. Or he would have been, had he been able to face in one direction at a time and keep the foot out of his mouth. Dicky Windbag saw the month out by whingeing at the BBC, which was no longer interested in his witterings. This was, to no surprise, the fault of Guardian readers and gays. And something about sex. And probably Muslims.
And so we came to Autumn, and here Littlejohn outdid himself with a fictional and vicious attack on the disabled, in support of the Mail’s nasty campaign to demonise the Motability scheme. The only award anyone sinking to those depths merits is one for kicking the vulnerable. Somehow I doubt that the generally generous Edgar Wallace would see things Littlejohn’s way.
The kicking of those less fortunate than The Great Man has continued, with his bullying defence of workfare, with the usual slice of dishonesty and lefty bashing, followed the same week with a pleading defence of the rich, which by happy coincidence means his legendarily foul mouthed editor and Himself Personally Now. Award? For that drivel? Someone is having a laugh.
Unless the citation is for maximising revenue from minimal talent, of course.