Quango - David Cameron Will Never Be Hip
“The demure Peter Pan collar and white cuffs are a passive-aggressive sign of purity,” wrote the ever-inspired Liz Jones, of Rebekah Brooks' fashion choices at Leveson. “This outfit reminds me of the cream Azzedine Alaia cardigan and matching dress worn by Naomi Campbell when she too was called to account, in the Blood Diamonds trial.”
How sage. How very sage. In its timeless simplicity, Brooks' garb also reminded QUANGO a lot of the Hugo Boss-designed charcoal uniform Hermann Goering wore at Nuremberg. Or perhaps the timeless navy suit with the sharply-set cuffs that Levi Bellfield wore at his trial for the murder of Milly Dowler. We would agree with Liz on one other front, too: “She really ought to tie her hair back. It makes her look like she's got something to hide.” After all, there is nothing that proclaims one has divorced oneself from one's private life and inner voice of reason than Liz's own scrape-back, partial-facelift hairdo.
As Lord Justice Lev (black suit, studded blue tie that instantly interposes him as the dowdy, sober metronome of Operation Justice), chief questioner Robert Jay (black suit, white shirt and bold red tie with a martial feel to it in keeping with his role as the fighting spearhead of Operation Justice), and their cast of thousands stumbled into their 20th week, the sound that could be heard echoing across British politics was that of LOL. "LOL," said people who had spent that same afternoon on urbandictionary, looking it up, alongside "TL;DR" and "LMAO", in case any of these turned out to be important in this terrifying brave new world it had suddenly become vital everyone join.
For Cameron, it was too late. He is already doomed to be an eternal mum to the nation, squinting at his mobile, failing to understand predictive text (“Oh now it's given me a 'u' but I wanted a 'v'. It must be broken...”), and generally being the dowager empress of Britain. (“Of course I like rap music. Snoopy Dog is my favourite.”)
It's all a bit like when Gordon Brown proclaimed in 2007 that he would regularly wake up to the swinging sounds of the Arctic Monkeys. Brown, who also rang SuBo to commiserate when she lost BGT, was the master of the hip dad faceplant. There is no record of whether SuBo rang him in return when he lost the election.
Brown should have known better. The most common lament by both politicians and voters these days is that our politicos are somehow "out of touch with the people". To which the truthful yet unsayable answer is: “Brother, have you SEEN the people? Do not piss on these folks if they catch fire, and maintain a safe cordon between yourself and their toothless-grinning cultural bankruptcy at all times.”
Sadly, the creepy demotic normal-guy fetish we now have for our leaders reached a new low just the other week, when David Cameron was asked in all seriousness whether he knew the price of a pint of milk. He wasn't thrown this curveball on Daybreak or When Fearne Met DC, but in the Actual House Of Actual Commons. Does anyone know the precise price of milk? Either you need it or you don't – you can't put cream on your cornflakes and dilute it with water if cream is cheaper. For all DC's saggy, foie gras-filled Etonian jowls, if you picked a hundred people from a council estate in Rotherham and asked them to precisely estimate the price of milk, you'd get mainly blank looks.
As we speak, Dave is probably getting some spotty Number 10 wonk to create hour-long weekly zeitgeist videos for him: who Snookie is, the necessary and sufficient conditions for trolling to occur, how Pitbull's career is going. Just the important stuff. If he were braver, his office would have come out with an official statement saying, in so many words, “Look. I haven't got time for this shit, OK? I'm running the fucking country. The UK: ever fucking heard of it?” Normality is the curse most of us have to live through. It is not the dream to which we should aspire.
Follow Gavin on Twitter: @hurtgavinhaynes
Illustration by Sam Taylor
Previously: Quango - Austerity Is So Last Season