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Monthly Archives: June 2017

Why we got it so right

As a columnist I am often asked, who the fuck do you think you are? What makes your opinions so much better than everyone else’s? And why are you unable to make real and lasting friendships with other humans? But mainly, I am asked about why I am so talented and if I have any tips for young hopefuls who may wish to get into being a professional opinion-haver. And as luck would have it, I can tell you.

Now, some people – bad people, who don’t have byline photos with them looking over their shoulder at the camera as if to say yes, here I am, it’s me again, and here I come with a wry sideways controversial look at the news – have said we got it wrong. About the election, you know. Articles such as “Trot bastard Corbyn will fucking lose you leftie pricks”, “Fucking hell I will stuff a blackbird up my arse and shit it into Dan Jarvis’s mouth if Labour don’t all die of shame on June 9” and “You bunch of antisemites, liars, bastards, scumbags, murderers, terrorists and wankers, why don’t you join nice people like us over here?” may have convinced you that I didn’t back Labour.

Nothing could be further from the truth. I am of course still a member of Labour, despite my column last year entitled “Why am I cutting up my Labour Party card and putting the bits into 37 different bins, each a five-mile drive from each other, just to be sure, and why you should too”. I back Labour, I just hate all their policies and wish daddy could come back and save us, but for SOME REASON people who are idiot purists and who put virtue-signalling principles above electability decided that blowing people up was in some way anything other than a glorious humanitarian liberation, which it clearly was, and actually, if you realised anything you’d see that Chomsky supported Pol Pot, so yeah, take that, leftie. Not so smug now, are we?

So yes, I support Labour, I just despise any policy that isn’t based on privatising and deregulating everything, and I certainly don’t want higher taxes for rich people. Some people – stupid people, idiots and sixth formers mainly – say this is something called “neoliberalism”. I mean, hey guys, what? That’s a pretty long word to be bandying around? Can you define it for me please? In six words. NOW. DEFINE IT NOW. YOU MUST DEFINE IT. THREE WORDS THEN. GO. CAN YOU? NO, YOU CAN’T. YOU CAN’T. YOU LOSE. I mean, it’s pathetic to try and define a huge amount of policies comng from very different places in a broad sweep of one term. Trotskyist Corbyn knows that and that’s why he is bad and wrong, and why even if he gets votes, that’s wrong, because principles are actually more important, I think you’ll find, but of course Labour hypocrites don’t see that at all, massive hypocrites that they are.

And as for this business about getting it wrong, er, hello? Labour didn’t win! I think you’ll find that my prediction of a thumping, glorious and well-deserved majority for Theresa May, that shrewd and brilliant operator who parked her tanks on Labour’s lawn and opened up a new centre-left party for everyone that would destroy Labour and push it into deserved obscurity, was closer to the truth than yours, where you said there might be modest gains by the Tories at the absolute best. So who really got it right?

Anyway, it’s not about getting it right or wrong anyway. Cuh, what do you take me for, a bloody fortune teller? No, and this is where you might want to start taking notes, being an opinion-haver today is not about being “right” or “wrong”. It’s all about getting that hot, hot take and those sexy numbers. It’s not about constructing an argument or trying to balance different views, it’s about steaming ahead like a freight train through a primary school, ensuring you make as much noise as possible. Otherwise how are your words going to make an impact in a crowded marketplace? You need to stand out. Take out all the doubts you have and imagine that you have such a colossal, grandiose sense of your own intellect that you never need to question anything, let alone yourself. Imagine (of course, some of us don’t have to imagine!) you’re always right, and plough on regardless of any difficulties with facts or things that might turn up in the meantime.

Sure, it might mean that sometimes you have to pretend you know more about something than you really do, but that can be done. I mean I’m pretty sure I know more about most things than anyone and am significantly better than you. In fact I read a book on bricklaying and it turns out I’m better at it than bricklayers are. But I guess we’ve got to give people who didn’t go to the right schools something to do, haven’t we! Ha ha. Yes. Yes, we do.

It might mean that sometimes you come up with stupid, wrong takes that are deeply unpleasant and upsetting, but that’s just a test. That’s the moment when you’re faced with a choice. You can either think about whether you might, possibly, have been wrong to have crashed through the wall and announced your opinion on something you weren’t really entirely au fait with… or you can do the right thing. Double down, blame the people criticising you – one or two of them are bound to have sworn, the scum, which will make it look like you’re the clever one – and carry on. People will really start to hate you. Your takes will be more controversial and more infuriating. And then you’ve really won.

So, sure, a lot of it’s about talent, and luckily I happen to have an awful lot of that. A lot of it, though, is also about making sure you have that strength of character, that courage, to make sure that even when someone dares to tell you that you might, possibly, on this occasion, have been wrong about something, or not as entirely right as they might have liked you to be, you dismiss their views entirely.

And that’s why there is no “right” and “wrong” as these idiots would like to have you believe. There is only right. Your right to get it wrong. Ha ha! (Leave that bit in, that’s good. Don’t end it on an unstressed syllable, you cunts.)

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Posted by on June 27, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Seven summers

Seven summers since I lost a proper job. Warm weather, like this, outside. I walked down the hill into town to put my redundancy cheque – yes, a cheque – in the bank. That time of year when violet takes over from bluebell. I saw a dead fledgling, its bulging oversized face being eaten away by hungry ants, at the bottom of a tree, and I carried on walking.

You can do anything you want, go anywhere you want, and no one will stop you. That’s what you think, but you don’t end up doing that. You end up filling out forms, writing the same thing over and over. This is my name, this is what I did, this is how I am justifying myself to you. I studied here. I got these results. I worked here. And here, and here and here. Would you like me to work for you? You might? You wouldn’t. Thank you very much and I’ll try again.

You meet people in interview rooms. Some of them are kind, and others you just want to jump over the desk and punch their stupid fat wobbling red faces until they stop moving. Sometimes they have sympathy for you, but often they don’t. There’s a thinly veiled contempt, which you feel obliged to return, but there’s only anger, and anger goes nowhere but back inside. But you never do anything. You try and be yourself, and you worry if yourself is really what you should be. Some people say, don’t be like that. Be more like this. You try being more like this and less like that. It doesn’t work. So you go back to being how you were anyway. And still it doesn’t work. You move on. Another room, another interview. Can you tell me why you want this job? Well, I need money in order to buy things and pay bills, and I can do this job, I really can do it, just let me have it, I’ve worked hard, I’ll work hard for you, I might not be exactly the precise person you’re probably looking before, but I know I can do it, and please give me the money you have, please, I would beg but I don’t know how to beg. So you don’t beg, you just retreat into that forced, polite, trying to make yourself look as good as you can, and you wonder if they can sense the desperation, and if they can, whether they care, but you know that they probably don’t, or if they do, so what? They’re still not giving you a job.

I did have a proper job, for a while. It paid pretty well and I could go on holidays. But I didn’t do the right things. I didn’t want to lie about the figures. I didn’t want to lie about the things that were happening. I didn’t want to pretend everything was all right, when it clearly wasn’t all right. I was a trouble maker. I wouldn’t just put my head down and tell the good lies for the benefit of everyone else. If you just say X is Y, that will get them off our back. But X isn’t Y. And when you won’t make X Y, even when it isn’t, you’re marked down as being the wrong kind of person. You’re the kind of person they really don’t want clogging up their organisation. So soon it was time for me to go, and seeing as I really didn’t want to go, I had to be made to go. So mistakes were found. Errors were seen. The slow walk down the corridor. The feeling that something is about to go horribly, horribly, terribly wrong. The meeting. The phone call. The meeting. With regret. And all of that. And then you begin again.

Work is a thing that has to be done. Find the thing you love and do it, they say. But not everyone does the thing they love for money. Not everything you love will pay you money, and there are bills that need to be paid and things that need to be done. Sometimes you just want to stand on the warm grass in the summer and know what the next week or next month or next year might bring, without knowing the only thing you can rely on is the passing of time.

Feel the warm grass under your bare feet. Summer again. Still nowhere to go.

 
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Posted by on June 3, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Cunt signalling

A few years ago, someone invented the phrase “virtue signalling”. (If I told you that this person writes for the Spectator, you might have a vague idea of the context, even if you hadn’t heard the phrase. Basically it means not being a cunt.) If you try not to be a cunt, you’re virtue signalling.

Virtue signalling has developed mission creep over the years since this terrible writer, whoever it was, I can’t bring myself to look him up, but it’s definitely a man who writes for the Spectator, invented it. So now it means anything you want it to mean, but specifically, anyone trying to have any faint trace of humanity or compassion, which you know to be risible and daft and not the kind of grown-up intelligent politics that you stand for, which completely coincidentally means you keeping a lot more of your money.

If you vote for something you believe in, you’re virtue signalling. If you think that rich people should pay more tax than poor people, you’re virtue signalling. If you think dropping bombs onto people isn’t a clever and good thing to do, you’re virtue signalling. If you think anything other than a brutal, horrible, vindictive, spiteful, cruel, unpleasant existence and hateful attitude towards everyone else is the right way to conduct yourself, you’re virtue signalling.

Virtue signalling is what cunts used to call being a “bleeding heart”, and the sentiment is similar. The “bleeding hearts” used to have weak, foolish, unmasculine traits such as caring about other human beings, thinking that killing other people or letting them die was in some strange way a bad or incorrect thing to happen. Nowadays, virtue signalling goes that little bit further. It’s not just that people dare to have these views, which are clearly incorrect and wrong and naive and foolish and stupid and should be endlessly mocked by those of us who realise it’s right to be a hateful prick; no, they have these views and dare to express them. Not in the shiny paper pages of superior right-wing political magazines, of course, because only the right kind of people with the right kind of friends get to write their opinions there – where they are transformed from the ramblings of unkind bastards into the sage savouries of bright, hilarious and intelligent men – but elsewhere. Maybe in tweets, or somewhere in a meme that gets more retweets than is deemed appropriate for someone without the proper clearance and authority; maybe on a Facebook page or on one of those news websites we can call “fake news” because it’s not done by someone in nice clothes who does the paper review on the BBC News channel at three in the morning.

It’s a phrase used by gatekeepers. It’s designed to shut down, dismiss and keep at bay those unruly plebs who are tapping at the drawbridge and demanding to actually be allowed to have a say about things – you know, plebs, morons and the great unwashed. Some of them think they’re allowed to have opinions on politics without even having gone to the right kind of Oxbridge college and studied PPE or PPS or whatever it is they grow chortling sketchwriters in nowadays. Stop these people in their tracks. Virtue signalling. You may think that, but that’s just the kind of virtue signalling a virtue signaller would use. You want other people to know that you’re a purity politics idiot who would rather believe in things than be in power; you would rather vote for things you want rather than things you don’t want by people you don’t like that might somehow lead accidentally to half-decent things, if you’re lucky, and if they aren’t too busy dropping fucking bombs on people halfway around the world in the name of humanitarian intervention – not that THAT’S virtue signalling, of course, because dropping a bomb actually creates peace, whereas wanting peace means that terrible things happen. Do you see?

But let’s call this what it is. What it really is. It’s cunt signalling. If they can use a dismissive little phrase to say that giving a shit about other humans is somehow invalid and pathetic, let’s have one for them. Cunt signalling. When you scoff at the idea that someone wouldn’t incinerate millions in a nuclear first strike: cunt signalling. When you tell people that actually taxing the rich more doesn’t raise significantly more money and therefore, let them keep it all, after all, it’s their money: cunt signalling. When you say that, actually, the best thing to do for the poor is to let them suffer, cut off their benefits, sanction them, stop them from getting the help they need, make it harder and harder to jump through the hoops they need to in order to be kept alive (and if a few of them drop dead in the process, well, so be it, lessons will be learned, and so on): cunt signalling.

Every time you see the phrase “virtue signalling”, used sincerely, it means that person wants you to know they’re a cunt. They’re telling you they’re a cunt. They are cunt signalling, very clearly. They don’t care about others and they want you to know that, because they’re proud of it. Happy to hate. Proud of hatred. Proud to be scum.

As soon as those two words come together, everything else disappears.

 
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Posted by on June 3, 2017 in Uncategorized