Five meetings for drinks with a fabulously wealthy exotic Russian patriarch Oleg Oligarski. With Peter Mandelson in tow, and millionaire playboy Nat Rothschild, and even with ‘Sir Brian Bender’ at the ready.. eh? eh?. Surely that proves George has nothing to hide, and who cares nowadays anyway? We’re not in the Dark Ages anymore.
Who cares what he may or may not have got up on the poop-deck, with the moon dancing over the med, and the champagne flutes tinkling while the perfectly-manicured staff served the cold pheasant and champingons. With just a few leaves of sorrel, perhaps.
Can’t the media leave adults to lead their own lives and express their identities in their own way? Homophobia is so gay. And who cares who tried to solicit what from who, or channel what through whose car company anyway? Even if the country is trembling at the prospect of the forthcoming recession. The main thing is that the integrity of the shadow chancellor is preserved. Nothing happened except a discussion about how a donation which wasn’t made might be made. Although it’s not clear how this lives up to the noble motto of the Bullingdon Club: “I like the sound of breaking glass” sounds more like the boy George’s credibility at the moment.
If the fragrant Rothschild is lying, George isn’t, and the empire is safe. But why would Rothschild commit such a huge public lie? Monstrous vain pique at a breach of society etiquette, and nothing more? If so, then Osbourne & Pals become an even more despicable crew of adolescent back-stabbing vermin than we ever imagined, and their constant scrutiny and celebration become a grim but socially essential duty in the run-up to a general election.
If Rothschild is telling the truth, then naturally Osbourne has to go, and unless Diddy David Cameron cuts the old school ties pretty sharpish, old boy, he will be dragged even further down with him.
The entire question of political funding has been raised by this squalid vision up the endoscope of wealth and power, and the tories are now wishing they hadn’t kicked the legs from under a cross-party agreement being put together earlier this year by a committee of MPs.
The usual unanswerable dilemma is rolled out. Namely, How can a democratic state subsidise its direct political enemies and retain any credibility among the electorate and taxpayers? Or to paraphrase the Powellites, Would You Let Your Taxes Fund The BNP?
After this week’s revelations, plus the accumulation of generations of ostentatious corruption, the ladder out of that dead end is quite clear.
Extremist politics may benefit briefly from initial state subsidy, but they have benefited far more from the constant flush of grand corruption which constantly undermines public trust in democracy. A system which strictly budgeted and structured the amount and degree of party political campaigning, putting the Budgerigar Nationalisation Party on the same electoral footing as the Tories would, it’s true, be subsidising lunacy and hatred from the public purse. But it would also be a great encouragement to a wider range of people to take part in the political process, something which the major political parties have been moaning about for decades as the number of people voting at elections fell and fell, and support for fascism grew and grew.
If taking part in a general election were as simple and relatively cheap as, say, planning a wedding reception, perhaps more people would begin to appreciate politics. That it can be noble and true rather than universally squalid, exclusive and destructive.
Recessions cause a growth in support for fascism, and we are in a recession now, says the Governor of the Bank of England. Maybe it would concentrate the minds of The Fancy if they were forced off their yachts and onto rainy doorsteps in Barnsley alongside the Workers Independence Party and the Yorkshire Freedom Alliance. And maybe we’d think a little more of them if they showed they had learned anything from the experience. All George Osbourne seems to have learned is not to put his hand in the fire. That doesn’t make him a potential chancellor of the exchequer. It makes him the mental equivalent of a 2 year-old.