Saturday, August 20, 2005

Appearance and Reality

There are few things in this life more irritating than people who like to give the impression that they're something that they're not.
We come across them in all walks of life: the pop stars that claim they are artists, the rich people who claim that money doesn't matter to them, bloggers who claim that they aren't interested in comments.
These people aren't that much of a problem. We can snigger at them in private, and snort at their more derisory statements.
It's when these sort of people get into a position of power and influence that we need to worry.
To find two prime examples we need look no further than George W Bush and Tony Blair, the men that claim leadership of the free world.
George Bush is perhaps the more worrying. He likes to give the impression that he is a straight talking, no bullshitting Texan, more at home on the ranch than in the salons of power. In fact, Bush's background couldn't be further removed from this John Wayne caricature. He is a blueblood WASP, Boston brahmin, prep shool and Yale educated son of wealth and privilege. The workshirt, swaggering gait, is just an act he uses to ingratiate himself with middle America.
He likes to contrast his homespun appeal with the superficial airs of the east coast liberal establishment. In fact, his marks at Yale were actually marginally better than those of his supposed intellectual superior, John Kerry.
Tony Blair is at least as irritating, if less worrying given his relative lack of power. Tony claims that he is a 'pretty straight kind of guy'; he likes to empathise with the common man. In truth, it is hard to imagine a more establishment figure than Blair. Educated at Fettes College (the Eton of the North) and Oxford, and given a shoo in to the Inns of Court, he has a background that would have been instantly recognisable to Gladstone and Churchill. His 'Cool Britannia' posturings during the height of Britpop were particularly revolting, if ultimately unimportant. What is most worrying is his adoption of a presidential style of government, and open contempt for Parliament and Cabinet.
I suppose image manipulation is inevitable in our media dominated world, but I don't think it's too much to ask that our political leaders should show a bit of sincerity once in a while.


Sniffy said...

Ahhh, Garfer. You see, you put things so beautifully, whereas I only have the patience and ability to come out with: "Tony Blair is a complete and utter fucking bastard, cocksucking, bastard of an incompetent LIAR!"

I hate that man so much. He has taken a not brilliant, but steadily recovering Britain and turned it into an utter shambolic shithole.

And you mention his presidential style of dictatorship, with that freeloader of a wife of his in tow. It makes my blood boil. And you see this style of leadership filtering down through the public services too: just about every NHS hospital has a Chief Executive who models themselves on Blair. Likewise, you can't believe a word any of them say and you know that they're doing what they're doing to put themselves in the spotlight for when the next big job at the Department of Health comes along. Same in local government.

He is a disgrace to politics and a disgrace to Britain.

becca said...

I'm really pleased to finally read someone that understand that Dubya Shrub is just a damn yankee sham and not a reflection of the proud state of Texas. I am still trying to figure out when we stopped being decent hard working Democrats and became frightened gov't paid for non-farming Republicans. Here's hoping Kinky Friedman can get us back in shape again. May the God of your choice bless you.

Rowan said...

man, I'm too tired to fully understand what I'm reading, i'll come back though after I've caught some zzzzzs

garfer said...

your description of Blair is wholly accurate and to the point. I hate the lot of them. Most of them have never fucking worked. They move from university to local politics to MP and worm their way up the ladder.
The Lib Dems are even worse in this respect.
As for the Tories, they come from more diverse backgrounds but carry the taint of the devil.
The north/south divide in US politics is hard for outsiders to understand. They used to say that southern Democrats were more right wing than northern Republicans. That doesn't seem to be true anymore.
Hope you come up bright and bushy tailed after those zzzzz's.

Sniffy said...

Don't get me started on the Lib Dems. For fuck's sake, fucking shower of shite, let's tax people even more, money-wasting twats.


Herge Smith said...

"bloggers who claim that they aren't interested in comments"

We should defineatley OUT those cunts!!!

Who did you have in mind Garfer???


Blairs a tit all right, and no mistake.

And I also hate phoney fuckers and pretentious cunts.

And bloggers who think their work is 'art' - I hate them the most.

garfer said...

Charles Kennedy is my MP. I think he's popular because he speaks in a nice highland burr. That doesn't alter the fact that he hasn't an original thought in his head. And he's a ginger twat.
But your work is art. Certainly not a patch on April's poetic outpourings, but art nonetheless.
I really don't know how to define art.

Sniffy said...

I can define art for you if you like Garfer!

I guess bloggers are just people who are too shy to be pavement artists. And at least bloggers don't need to learn how to mime, or paint, or play an instrument.

garfer said...

I hate mime artists. Ronald MacDonald is a mime artist. Nuff said.

Merkin said...

My favourite (probably not 100% accurate) quote from the Swiftian satire that is "Team America - Word Police", spoken by (I think) Alec Baldwin:

"As actors, it is our responsibility to read the newpapers, then go on TV telling everyone what we've read, and pretending that we came up with it ourselves".