I’ve long considered Simon Hoggart a smug, supercilious asshole. But I can’t argue with this (by Hoggart, in today’s Graun):
“On the radio we heard denunciations of the embryo bill, as modern church leaders tried to halt research that might improve and extend life for millions of people otherwise certain to bring terrible suffering to themselves and their families.
“I do think a compromise is possible. They can believe what they like, whether it’s the Virgin Birth, the infalibilty of the Pope, or the true heir to Muhammed (which is what splits Sunni from Shia). or,come to that, the teapot round the sun. just so long as they just stop messing up our lives, whether it means obliging us to have a spring holiday in midwinter, or dying in pain and humiliation while harassed families reach the end of their tether.”
Hoggart doesn’t claim to be any great leftie (I seem to recall he was quite keen on Blair in the early nineties), but at least he has an elementary grasp of enlightenment values and humanism, unlike his “left wing” Graun colleague, this Staninist apologist for religion, genocide, totalitarianism and ignorance.
Meanwhile, Milne’s fellow Stalinist and Respect-ator, Mr Galloway has come out with this extraordinary fundamentalist, religious outburst that has rendered any further attempts by myself to satirise him, redundant. As Tom Lehrer (allegedly) said when Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973: “Satire is dead”.