Observers of the Pundit Establishment in all its agony will already know that this less than august body has more than its fair share of those who have gradually crossed the floor from left to right, becoming increasingly selfish, reactionary and authoritarian as they go. But when the hour demands an inadvertent comedy turn as well, one pundit has no peer, and that pundit is the preposterous Tony Parsons.
Parsons, who was accommodated by the Mirror for rather too long, but has now gravitated to the Murdoch Sun, has today indicated that he at least understands one thing: the right-wing propaganda spewed out by him and his pals is having no effect on that part of the electorate which is increasingly drawn to Jeremy Corbyn. So he has raised the white flag and told his remaining readers that a Labour Government is inevitable.
“Let’s teach the Glastonbury groovers a lesson on the horrors of socialism and give them Prime Minister Corbyn” moans the headline, before Tone makes his first research fail. “IT is no good lecturing all the young groovers at Glastonbury about the horrors of socialism - they are going to have to learn that hard lesson for themselves”. The average age of Glasto-goers in 2015 was 42. It’s probably around that this year.
So after alienating a few more million voters, off he goes again: “there’s no point in the old folk droning on about the Seventies”. Why don’t yer, Tone? It’s yer favourite subject. And, indeed, he promptly does just that. “It is no good telling youngsters about three million unemployed, endless strikes and how runaway inflation wakes you up in the middle of the night with the worry about how the hell you will pay next month’s bills”. Ri-i-i-ight.
A word in your shell-like, Tone: we did not have three million unemployed in the seventies. Unemployment did not peak until well after Mrs T had come to power and the Tories inadvisedly listened rather too keenly to the advice of Professor Milton Friedman and his pals. Three million unemployed had nothing to do with socialism, and everything to do with a combination of monetarism and free market doctrine.
As for inflation, yes, it was bad in the 1970s, but laying the blame solely at the Labour Party is coming it. The “Barber boom”, so named after Ted Heath’s chancellor of the exchequer, really kicked it off, Labour under Harold Wilson failed to tame it, and after Mrs T came to power, off it went again. Bad inflation returned - still under the Tories - at the end of the 80s (the “Lawson boom” this time) and was only tamed in the mid 90s.
Anyone would think Tony Parsons is getting forgetful. But he’s got that covered with a little ageism and abuse: “Jeremy Corbyn gurning on the doorstep of 10 Downing Street like a right-on Albert Steptoe … let’s get the senile old booby in Downing Street”. That’s probably actionable, as well as rank hypocrisy. After all, Jezza isn’t the one who can’t remember what happened in the 1970s - that would be Tony Parsons.
Isn’t it high time Tony Parsons was put out to grass? He’s done quite enough of the fraudulently scoring More And Bigger Paycheques For Himself Personally Now.