Readers of the Sunday Sun may not be aware that one of the paper’s columnists read English Language and Literature at Christ Church, Oxford, especially when her copy is littered with such Wildean bon mots as “bugger off”, “bastards”, and “sod off”. Yes, we’re talking about self-promotion specialist Louise Mensch, for whom Page 13 of today’s paper is all about Herself Personally Now.
(c) Doc Hackenbush 2014
The judgmental tone is not merely strident, but screaming: small wonder the paper has lost more than 70,000 sales of late. Typical is the attack on Peaches Geldof, who happens to be dead: “the smack that did for her was hidden inside a box of sweets. Exactly where a child would look”. Magnificently selective – it was in the loft, apparently. Yeah, kids are always up in the loft, eh?
And alongside the selection is the deflection: never mind Gaza, readers, look over there at ISIS! “If you really support the rights of Muslims, Israel isn’t the first thing on your mind” she asserts, talking of “the Muslim children and women of Mosul, girls and women aged 11 to 46, Isis are rounding up so they can mutilate their genitals”. Very good Louise – that story turned out to be a fake.
Still, that doesn’t fit the desired narrative, of bashing “Lily-livered US hand wringers” and “professional Israel-haters” (I hated the country so much I visited it twice). And the intolerant tone extends to the Commonwealth Games, which we should not be hosting. No, according to Ms Mensch, “we should get rid of the Commonwealth”. Not sure Brenda would agree to that. So what’s her beef?
“In the vast majority of Commonwealth countries it is illegal to be gay. You can be jailed for it”. No shit, Sherlock. And why do you think it’s called the British Commonwealth? Because Great Britain is the former colonial power. When did all those countries where homosexuality is still illegal gain independence? In the years between the end of World War 2 and the mid-1960s.
What did the law in Great Britain say about homosexuality at the time? It said it was an illegal practice. You could be jailed for it. Louise Mensch cannot get her head round this straightforward chain of logic. And somehow she got elected as an MP. Moreover, you can forget the idea that she’s in favour of basic human rights: in the same column there is a tirade at departing Attorney General Dominic Grieve.
“Never mind Andy Coulson – the Prime Minister’s real error of judgment was in appointing Dominic Grieve”. Yeah, never mind that Coulson’s doing a stretch in Belmarsh, look over there at someone who believes in basic human rights. Like not jailing people because of their sexual orientation. Which Louise Mensch agrees with on the one hand, then disses with the other.
This is appallingly incompetent punditry. But it’s bloody hilarious with it.