Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Public Service Announcement: Ivan Cameron

Out of respect for the fact that David Cameron's disabled son, Ivan, died this morning, I've taken down Monday's post for now. I'll put it back up in a week, not least because we had a great discussion going on in the comments. If you desperately want to make any comments between now and then, just email them to me at the address below. But - even though a tory is a tory is a tory - the man and his grieving family deserve a break. And if I can contribute to that break whilst squatting in my small corner of the blogosphere, I think it's only proper to do so. As always, please feel free to disagree.


  1. I disagree. I think the man should be given privacy re the tragic issue at hand and am appalled by the speculation being made by the 24 hr news media.

    But he doesn't get a free pass on criticism on other issues, and it's especially odd to take down a post that was up a while before this tragedy occurred.

  2. But Tim, the post in question was at least as much about personalities as politics, and in that context it's just kicking a man when he's down. I'm sure Laurie will continue to attack Tory policies.

  3. Not wanting to be funny or anything but should you really be writing stuff which needs to be taken down in situations like this? Political criticism is one thing, and valuable. And should never be withheld out of sympathy.

    Personal criticism is quite another.

    Maybe there's a lesson here.

  4. Neuroskeptic and tim f: Tim makes a good point, and if the post in question had been a serious and subtle attack on tory policy then, rest assured, it'd still be up.

    But it wasn't. It was me, on a Monday night, having a 600-word giggle at the tories whilst making a general point about meritocracy with some knob jokes thrown in. Now, don't get me wrong. Unlike Neuroskeptic, I think that there is an important place for the poking of fun and even the telling of knob jokes in political journalism, and *certainly* in political blogging. It's vital to remind ourselves constantly that the injustices of this world and the games that are played at the top are not just appalling - they are ridiculous, and sometimes just fucking funny. I know some of you don't like that style of writing. I hope that some of you like it as much as I do, and I hope that's some of what you come to this blog for.

    But there's also a time and a place to poke fun.

    And this is not it.

    Rest very damn assured, Cameron and his party will be judged on their reaction to this tragedy. If any junior staffer so much as *thinks* of trying to push through some dodgy manifesto-oriented policy, the left and the blogosphere will be all over them. If they're wise, they will deport themselves like decent human beings - and we need to allow them the chance to do so by doing the same. They would have slightly less right to this attitude from us if they were the party in power - but right now, they aren't. Right now, there's really not much they can do to exploit this situation, and it would be foolish and dangerous of them to do so. Much as it kills me, KILLS me to have to be grown-up about this, we need to give them the chance to prove us wrong, just now.

    Because a sick little boy has died, and it's just not good form to make wanking jokes about his dad the same day.

  5. Agreed with every word of that, Laurie.

  6. I love arguing with people, but if it gets too serious it's best to knock it off for a while. I wouldn't want to have to fight someone over differentiating, now would I?
    Well, mostly not, at least...
    But that's very tactful of you Penny. I salute the compassion, even if it's somewhat against your nature. ;)

  7. Good call - the post was playing the man not the ball, and I don't have a problem with that under normal circumstances. Satire and polemic are fine things to do, and I wonder how many people who'd disagree have a _consistent_ position against them?

    But not right now. Perhaps I think this way becuase I've got a 6 year old son, but that's not a bad reason.

    Chris Williams

  8. "Unlike Neuroskeptic, I think that there is an important place for the poking of fun and even the telling of knob jokes in political journalism, and *certainly* in political blogging."

    No, I'm way ahead of you. See, for example, Viz magazine, Charlie Brooker, Chris Morris, for the kind of thing I'm all about. Knob jokes in political blogging - you're behind the times. Conservative, even.

    But your post on Monday was just a plain personal smear (fnark fnark), and below the belt (chortle). You can tell this because of the fact that you felt the need to pull it down.

    Quite apart from the fact that the biscuit game is an urban myth.

  9. Because a sick little boy has died, and it's just not good form to make wanking jokes about his dad the same day.

    But the week before, and the week after are both ok?

    Neuroskeptic has it right, you know it.

  10. My sympathies are with the Cameron family and I am genuinely sorry for their loss.

    My heart breaks for any child fated to experience distress, pain and suffering. I only hope that Mr. Cameron will be similarly influenced while implementing his party's social policy and welfare programme, which impact directly upon the lives of millions of innocent children born into less privileged families than his own, when he becomes Prime Minister in 2010.


Comments are open on this blog, but I reserve the right to delete any abusive or off-topic threads.