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Sunday 8 May 2016

Graham Linehan Pwns Toby Young

After the news that the loathsome Toby Young was leaving his post as CEO at the West London Free School (WLFS), and his confession that he had not been quite as knowledgeable on the subjects of setting up and running a school as he might have made out, the rest of the press, starting with the Evening Standard - a Tory-friendly paper if ever there was one - picked up the story and ran with it.
More less than totally grown up debate from Tobes

Well, no publicity is bad publicity and all that, but Tobes was not at all happy with the result, and so he took to the platform granted him at the Spectator to whinge ad infinitum (and, sadly, ad nauseam) about how rotten the media had been to him. He whinged so long, and so loudly, I did wonder if he’d experienced a Damascene conversion and become a supporter of campaigning group Hacked Off.

Yesterday was one of the worst days of my lifetold the headline, reminding anyone still bothered that it’s all about Himself Personally Now. But do go on. “When I got an email from the Evening Standard’s education correspondent at 06.29am yesterday I had no idea that my life was about to turn to shit”. And what form would this, er, shit have taken?

The Standard had asserted “Toby Young today admitted running a free school is more difficult than he thought as he prepares to step down as CEO of the West London Free School Trust”. What was his problem with that? “At no point had I said, either in my email [response to the Standard] or in the Schools Week interview, that ‘running a free school’ was ‘harder than I thought’”. But it was, wasn’t it, Tobes?

Otherwise, why did the WLFS have to have Sally Coates parachuted in to sort things out after the sudden departure of Sam Naismith, the senior school’s second headmaster, who departed not just in the middle of the school term, but midweek too? The Standard, and indeed every media outlet that picked up on Tobes’ Schools Week interview with Laura McInerney, would have had no problem standing up their stories.
Was there, perhaps, some other factor needling Tobes that he wasn’t letting on about? Was it just the rotten meeja (and especially Jon Snow at Channel 4 News, who was by definition both wrong and a rotten leftie)? Was there Someone Whose Name Could Not Be Mentioned? D’you know what, there was.

Some time before Tobes committed his coursework submission for the Practical and Applied Chronic Whinging GCSE, writer and director Graham Linehan had seen the Standard headline and observed “It's difficult for teachers. What made London's Village Idiot think he could do it?” Tobes wants above all to be accepted as one of the Metropolitan elite. The last thing he wants is to see someone with significantly more media credibility telling the world that he’s a hick.

Those who concluded that Tobes was protesting just a little too much now know why.


Anonymous said...

Gloriously - or ingloriously, depending on mood - Toby Jug now runs a heavy risk of unwanted estrangement from the far right.

The tories have a habit of cutting loose anybody who makes them look like the thieving spivs they are. It makes their claim about "compassionate tories" - nobody I know has ever met or heard from one - look like the, er, shit it is.

You need only consult the archives for the lives of Grant Shapps, Jeffrey Archer, Jonathan Aitken, Reginald Maudling and Ted Heath for evidence.

Toryism depends essentially on lying and illusion. Somehow, the Jug has tripped over the threshold. He'll have to grovel uncontrollably if he wants to get back inside the thieves den.

Crispin Fisher said...

I wonder if it is more than just a coincidence that Toby Young has decided to walk away from his Free school vanity project on the day that Boris ceased to be mayor of London.

Boris has clearly done Toby a few favours over the past few years and I'm pretty certain that he wouldn't have got the same preferential treatment from Sadiq Khan.

Pam Smith said...

Were we not to judge Toby on the first GCSE results from the WLFS? When are they due out?

Shawlrat said...

Toby Young has just appeared on BBC London news extolling WLFS. Apparently he's leaving so more experienced people can, in his words, "grow the business ". That's what education is then, a business.
This is someone who hates publicity.