As if the Jimmy Savile saga had not given the obedient hackery of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre enough ammunition in their endless quest to attack the BBC, the utterly trivial matter of a presenter not wearing a tie has been elevated to the matter of utmost concern by the odious Quentin Letts (let’s not) as he unwisely picks on The Inquisition Of Pax Jeremiah.
Harry Potter And The Gobshite Of Arslikhan
Paxman, who is apparently 62 – as if anyone outside Dacre Towers gives a fig – has fronted Newsnight while not in possession of any neckwear. This is a direct affront to the Vagina Monologue, as such an act means that he is not the Daily Mail’s Kind Of Person. So the serially dishonest Letts has been dispatched to perform the customary hatchet job. But here a problem enters.
Quite apart from the faux sincerity – “despite the recent hoo-hah over the discarded Jimmy Savile programme, Newsnight is a good programme” – there is the small matter of the photo at the top of the Letts column. Here, the being who is not actually Harry Potter is shown ... not wearing a tie. In fact, finding photos of Letts not wearing a tie is not a particularly demanding exercise.
And his assertion that Paxman is “plainly going through some king of mid-life crisis” is not a wise line to take for someone who is, er, entering that age when folks tend to go through mid-life crises. Letts is 49, although his manner is that of a much older person: few in their late 40s subscribe to the idea of being a “middle stump Anglican” and try to get theatres closed down because their morals have been offended.
No, the real point here is that Letts is jealous of Paxo, and is just having a snark because he wants to keep in with his editor, whose volcanic and irrational hatred of the BBC is the stuff of legend among those who scrabble around the dunghill that is Grubstreet. So he has penned a lame slice of character assassination to curry favour and keep him in paycheques.
Meanwhile, Letts won’t be venturing anywhere near the Newsnight studio for a very long time. As Private Eye might have observed, “I wonder if the two are in any way related? I think we should be told”.
I trust Letts isn't having a mid-life crisis at 49, as this would presumably mean we'll be stuck with him for another forty-nine per cent of a century.
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