Last year, columnist Tanya Gold spent some time observing man-baby Milo Yiannopoulos as he went about his business, such as it was, in and around New York City. She told Spectator US readers how “I was in New York to report on his attempted comeback after a spring when he fell, swiftly and dramatically, down a hole. A few months earlier, a recording was released in which Milo appeared to endorse sex between ‘younger boys and older men’ … and he was dropped first by his publishers Simon & Schuster, then by his employer Breitbart. He was disinvited from the Conservative Political Action Conference”.
But by the time Ms Gold encountered him, Yiannopoulos proclaimed “Now I’m roaring back”, saying of his book Dangerous, which S&S declined to publish, “This isn’t the biggest book of the year … this is the biggest book of the decade”. It wasn’t. No surprise there.
He claimed to have “outgrown” Breitbart, and couldn’t understand why anyone would dislike him: “Sarah Silverman has said worse stuff about Jews … Joan Rivers said worse stuff about everyone. I haven’t really said anything that awful. The thing I’m most closely associated with is ‘Feminism is Cancer’, which isn’t even an insult”.
After Breitbart came Milo Inc. This was Yiannopoulos’ “talent factory”, another venture which featured his ability to spend significant amounts of other peoples’ money, a habit that Zelo Street regulars may remember. He did it with The Kernel. He did it with the Telegraph. He did it with the Mercers. And now he had found another sucker.
It was further proof that Yiannopoulos was right when he told Ms Gold “I spent thirty years powerless and dependent and miserable and alone, and then I discovered that I had this hold over other people”. The Mercers had bankrolled him, but then, after the paedophilia revelation, that funding stream was abruptly terminated. So he found another one.
Banking heir Matthew Mellon was to have been his latest mark. But Mellon died unexpectedly from what appears to have been a drug overdose earlier this month. So the business is now imploding, with Politico reporting “Running out of money and down on his luck, right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos laid off the small staff of Milo Entertainment Inc. earlier this month, according to three people familiar with the situation”.
Joe Bernstein of BuzzFeed also had the news - “heard from four good sources that Milo Inc. - Milo Yiannopoulos's post-Breitbart ‘talent factory’ - has gone belly up”. When the only talent on offer is to extract money from others to maintain an undeserved lifestyle, this was inevitable. Bernstein added “Milo is notorious for living beyond his means and funding was scarce after the Mercers dumped him for associating so closely with white supremacists”.
And Eliot Higgins merely observed “Milo is the Alan Partridge of the far right”. Without someone to pay his bills, Yiannopoulos is rapidly regressing to become the nobody he was before Steve Bannon picked him up out of the gutter. It is a richly deserved reckoning.