Lord Ashcroft’s literary revelations concerning the Prime Minister’s historical intercourse with an ex-pig has provided an unprecedented opportunity for all the wits, and wags among the Twitterati, and all those who move and shake in the virtual world of social media to indulge in a comparatively clean orgy of fun and frolic.
Although the story was played down by the mainstream, in what one poster called ‘The silence of the hams’, not a minute has been wasted in sharing and embroidering it by every digital means available.
It’s not difficult to see why Cameron and his cronies are so fearful of the rise of online free speech. His predecessors had – and still retain – a substantial gag on print and broadcast media, but the new media-monster has really only found its feet during his climb to power, and he is looking more and more like becoming its first big kill.
Voters and non-voters alike find it reasonable to expect that someone charged with deciding the fate of the known world would maintain a certain amount of dignity. But Cameron has shown himself as someone who was so uninterested in the opinions of, and the effect he was having upon, ordinary people that he didn’t even imagine that it could do harm to his future career. It’s very unlikely the ordinary decent folk present – the hired help – had seen a pig do that before, though it wasn’t they who let the cat out of the bag
We don’t know what his Lordship was doing while Cameron was putting himself in the place of the more usual apple, but it’s clear he had a beef. Chaqu’un á son goût.
Knowing that Ashcroft had this sort of dope, and that he was less than chuffed to be kept out of the cabinet, you’d think Cameron might have come clean (as it were). It’s a top executives job to be on top of things after all.
But, if and when the hilarity finally dies down, there are naturally more serious aspects to this entire shambles.
Can people who grow up with such disdain for decency and those of their fellows that come silver-spoonless into the world really represent anyone other than their fellow boorish oafs? For what kind of adulthood would such excess truly fit them if money and connections didn’t render it irrelevant?
The world of the eighteenth century roisterer is no longer with us. The toffs can no longer summarily hang someone for stealing a sheep, or other available farmyard animal.
The British are no longer as cowed and controlled as they once were.
But the ‘ruling class’ remains as out of touch as the court of the czar. These excesses are not seen as something the jolly lads got up to, but something that fits in the pattern that, little by little, is emerging of what the lads become when they get older; when their guiding principles are still those of privilege and disconnection from the lives and concerns of the peasant majority.
In the ‘journey’ from congress with dead animals to political domination, where next to get your jollies?