If you’re looking at Roar-era Katy Perry and not understanding it and thinking it’s weak and wondering, “Who is this for? Who is buying this?” the answer is me. They made it just for me. I am their target demo. All I want that woman to do is win and win and win until she is sitting on a giant pile…
The “right to purchase” lad’s mags is not being compromised in any way, in as far as they are still able to be purchased - because modesty bag or no modesty bag, most people who are not children will still know what they’ll be getting right?
And would it be possible for a “niche lobby group” (ha) to affect the sales policies of major supermarkets? Or does the defensiveness of their publishers have more to do with their fear that if the normalisation of women as sexual objects and imagery in public life were to be halted, or reversed, their readership may decrease as the effect of this down the line?
Modesty bags by no means tackle the core issues at play here, and neither does targeting lad’s mags alone, but their publishers’ reactions to this step are interesting.
Sometimes you’re 24 and scrolling past something with 97,000 notes for the sixth time on your dashboard today and growing slowly homicidal in the way where no one’s death is immediately imminent but where maybe one day you’ll be 45 and drive your children into a lake.
Note: Pancaklentine’s Day only occurs on the day between Pancake Day and Valentine’s Day. For the day between Valentine’s Day and Pancake Day, and the day when Pancake Day and Valentine’s Day occur simultaneously, please see Valencake Day and Vapanlencatineke’s Day respectively.
Just to continue the theme of writing about nothing of any importance, here are some questions I have about snow.
Does today’s snowfall justify taking pictures of other people’s houses or is that still unacceptable? I don’t want to, but I have seen other people do it and I was wondering.
Can I legitimately take a picture of a snow covered postbox and compare it to a snowglobe I made for my Grandad?
How am I supposed to check the water meter now?
What is it about snow, specifically, that makes people send pictures of snow they have seen into news stations?
What sort of disposable society do we live in, if people are panic buying because they don’t have several weeks worth of food and drink frozen and tinned, and industrial quantities of shower gel, toothpaste and laundry powder stored in case of apocalyptic weather/zombie conditions? Like I do?
If HMV has closed, Lance Armstrong has taken performance enhancing drugs, Tesco is selling horse meat burgers, and snow is causing some sort of meltdown (freezedown?) of human sentience, were the Mayans a couple of weeks off in their calculations, or is it wrong to assign some sort of cosmic significance to things that aren’t in the least bit surprising?
Should I currently be finishing off my PhD applications instead of writing this?
I know the answer to approximately one of these questions (it’s the last one).
Suggestions if you're stuck for a New Year's Resolution
A lot of people make New Year’s Resolutions. It usually involves giving up something you enjoy, such as smoking, sitting down all day, shovelling salted butter down your throat or murdering hitch-hikers. The thing about resolutions, though, is that they’re doomed to fail. It appears that the reason for these pledges, is to try and extend your lifespan a little so you can spend your extra decade or so hating yourself for enjoying yourself, then hating not enjoying yourself.
I made some crushingly simple New Year’s Resolutions last year, which I made no meaningful effort whatsoever to follow. As a result, I’m not really any better off, so I’ve reassessed the need to make an actual effort to improve my life and well-being, and come to the conclusion that there’s not an awful lot I can (be bothered) to do. This year, instead, I’ve made some resolutions for the rest of humankind to follow, to make my life considerably less awful. Since they’re resolutions, they’re bound to fail, but hey, it’s something to think about.
Stop putting Emeli Sande on everything. I appreciate that people like her and I have absolutely no problem with that, but I keep coming home and expecting to find her singing in my kitchen while the votes for what I should have for tea are being counted.
Fewer cupcake shops. Please. Combined with the “Keep Calm and…” apocalyptic uber franchise, it makes me want to commit genocide. I don’t really know where all this came from. At first, I didn’t really mind very heavily decorated fairy cakes that become too sickly to finish very quickly. I preferred them in a decorative capacity. But they’ve very, very quickly become the Emeli Sande of the culinary world. I’m living in hope that 2013 will be the year of edgy takeovers of failed cupcake businesses.
STOP QUOTING ELF on social networking sites. If you’re guilty of this, you’re guilty of killing Christmas, so fucking stop it.
Put Arrested Development on a regular TV channel so I don’t have to get a Netflix account.
Stop counting things in sleeps, you are not infants, this is unnecessary, and simultaneously infantile, very confusing, and broadly inaccurate. If you’ve ever made a joke about how many sleeps a narcoleptic or insomniac has until something then congratulations, you’re not funny, at all.
If you are making a new year’s resolution that’s not one of the above, kindly refrain from associating with me.
I have a lot of other, more productive things to be doing, but I’m sitting in front of the TV instead, switching between Bargain Hunt, E4 and the Crime Channel, writing this, when I actually have more pressing things to be writing. I’m telling myself it’s because I’m deathly ill and there’s no way I can attempt to translate the Russian State Archives when my eyes and nose feel like they’re trying to violently escape my face and this is currently blowing my mind, but I probably just have a cold. My mucus-filled hell has driven me to ramble some things about Christmas adverts, because I’m hell-bent on dragging you all down to my own wretched level. I probably love Christmas a lot more than your average human, proven by the fact that I started eating mince pies in October, and by my desperate need to prove that I love Christmas to anyone reading this. But that’s not the point. The point is that I resent Christmas being ruined by shit adverts.
I’ll gloss straight over breathy covers of classic songs, because this, unfortunately, is not a Christmas 2012 phenomenon, but a crisis of our age, predicted by the Maya, and written in the book of Revelation. John Lewis has tried to up its game this year. It’s moved on from a boy being really excited about a mysterious gift for his parents (it was probably a pipe bomb or a decomposing animal, the little prick), to a snowman proving either that the only way to a female of any kind’s heart is material goods; or that you can endear yourself to a woman with only gloves and a scarf. Literally warm her up . Thanks John Lewis! Problematically, too, the ad only presents us with a snapshot of the couple’s relationship, without raising uncomfortable questions about the possibility of a man-made entity developing sentience and the potential for love and hate; how warming up a snow-woman endears you to her instead of melting and killing her; or how exactly snow sex works.
Inexplicably, most Christmas ads this year appear to reflect and celebrate the misogynist and sweatshop-like conditions suffered by the stereotypical mum-at-Christmas. Apparently a vague gesture of recognition in a supermarket advert and your happiness/all round ungratefulness are enough reward for mum’s toil. And a petrol station bouquet from dad instead of actually helping her buy and wrap any presents. In supermarket land, women over 30 are servants who have to beg for scraps of the Christmas dinner they prepared; daughters and girlfriends are a terrifying army of product fiends, satisfied only by 3 for 2 deals on make up and bubble bath, while sons and boyfriends are dustbins for all food (even Iceland’s), and dads are saints, whose sole contribution of a bouquet is enough to make all the lethargic oblivion forgotten. Merry Christmas!
I’m fairly sure adverts are supposed to make you feel good about a brand, and make you want to shop there at Christmas because they have cheap and probably (before any lawyers get involved) steroid filled poultry, not engender a deep and resonating sense of guilt about letting mum shoulder the burden at Christmas. I might make some onion gravy this year (but I’m not buying any turkey for anyone, fuck you Morrison’s).
Honourable mentions, though, go to the Iceland advert, purely for its fitting use of Pure Imagination, as that’s exactly the strategy that was employed in the invention of its luminous, demented experiments they consistently pass off as Christmas dinner. And to Lidl for their Christmas magazine which they ingeniously titled “A Lidl Bit of Magic”. Wonderful.
I don't think the workers of the world uniting is quite what Osborne actually has in mind.
So. SO. Gideon had a few ideas about welfare reform, termed in some pretty handy rhetoric that’s actually a gulf away from reality. It’s the old Victorian tale of the idle poor again, and not an awful lot has changed, except the unemployed, assumed drunks with large families aren’t just passed off as Catholics this time, and the single, unemployed young people not living in their parents’ homes aren’t assumed to be prostitutes anymore. Oh, and the Tories are quoting Marx now, that’s novel. But broadly, they’re to take the brunt of the proposed £10 billion in welfare cuts, and ironically the ‘chains’ they have to lose are actually their labour rights, which are only chains if you’re a soulless automaton seeking nothing but profit for profit’s sake [insert joke here].
Attempts to redefine rape for political purposes do not serve the purpose of whistle-blowing on abuses of (super)powers. The redefinition of rape to ‘proper’ rape, and ‘illegitimate’; ‘non-forcible’ rape; ‘sexual misconduct’; or any other veritable misnomer, has serious implications for the many women who are raped every day. Rape does not just refer to a brutal attack on a stranger in the street. It refers to any incident on non-consensual sex, whether by a stranger, or a lifelong friend.
These severely limited redefinitions of rape to a violent attack from a stranger not only have powerful implications for future convictions, from juries of our peers, but insults and shows blatant disregard for the experiences of individuals who have been raped. The devastation that results from rape by someone you know is every bit as serious as that by a random, violent attack; particularly when the role of trust in maintaining healthy relationships and a happy life is considered.
But this is unimportant to the white, middle-class men who seek to redefine rape as a crime. What’s more important than the lives of real people, mostly women, are political arguments that can be much better supported by other means. You do not need to dismiss alternative, very serious charges against a man, as “feminist fabrications”, to prove that certain Western nations often seek to subvert justice, and practice an imperialist system. You can look straight to those nations for evidence of that. You do not need to fabricate a distinction between ‘legitimate’ and ‘illegitimate’ rape in order to argue against abortion. You can promote adoption and counselling survives, which would benefit women, regardless of pro/anti-choice standpoint.
To redefine rape to support a political argument casually and unthinkingly dehumanises its victims; mostly women, let’s be honest. It assumes that the crimes committed against these people are unimportant, a statistic. It assumes that they do not have the right to react against an act committed against them. It assumes that they are not capable of honestly identifying a crime committed against their person. Essentially, it reinforces the social attitude that the rights of women are unimportant, when they pose a threat to assumptions of patriarchy.
Julian Assange may be at risk of an unfair trial, this is true. But this should be distinguished from the charges of sexual assault made against him; these are serious charges, to be treated as such, at risk of a much greater injustice against millions of people across the world. They should not be used as a tool against the US, or dismissed as part of the big battle against US hegemony. This is not only dangerous to women, but to the credibility of those who ‘legitimately’ oppose hegemonic power. And George Galloway would do well to remember that.
If you’d asked me a week ago whether or not I felt anything for the Olympics but a hollow and bleak sense of resentment that there is probably only a word in Russian for, I’d have screamed ‘NOOOOO’ at you until tears streamed down both of our faces. I despised every pathetic aspect of it: the mindless, unashamed corporate sponsorship deals; the ticketing system that tried to charge Muamba £1600 for a standard seat at the Opening Ceremony (among other sins); the shambolic outsourcing deals; the community alienation; the whole shebang.
Ask me this week though, and my feelings are much the same, although you can add a sense of general harassment to the mix. I almost got into it, when I watched a show about gymnastics, but I soon realised that I was actually just fostering a sense of misplaced nostalgia for simpler times of Cold War politics, chipboard and misery, before my own birth.
I think the Games actually started today, with some football, which is unnecessarily confusing for me, the apathetic non-observer, since the Opening Games has not happened yet. Or at least I don’t think it has; presumably if it had then I’d have been startled in some sense by unnecessary crowds, loud noises and uniformed parades; pointless overreactions to absolutely nothing; and senseless Coldplay renditions (probably of Fix You). But that hasn’t happened since the Jubilee, so I’m guessing the Olympic Opening Ceremony hasn’t happened.
But anyway, yes, I’m feeling dreadfully harassed by all this public love of sports that people weren’t interested in three weeks ago, but mostly I’m feeling harassed by all those people banging on about how I’m a ‘spoilsport’ because I don’t want to join in all the organised fun. “Don’t be a spoilsport!” they cry. “Join in the fun and catch the Olympic bug!”, they taunt. “Support your country!” Is a particular grating one, since team GB is made up of four different states and nationality is artificial anyway. But what really gets on my tits, is “Just try and enjoy it!”, because those people sound like fucking horrible rapists.
Yes, okay, these people have trained for their entire lives for this, but I’ve trained for my entire life to make a living in history, and that’s more than likely, been cruelly snatched away from me thanks to successive governments intent on making higher education the preserve of the very rich and Tory. So I don’t really feel like getting the Olympic bug, I’m still getting over the one I caught working round the clock to balance a job and a Master’s degree. Also I’m bad at sports and hate them.
Some things that give me anxiety that probably shouldn't give me anxiety.
I haven’t posted anything for a really long time, because I get paid to write bile about politics for the next couple of months. You will be able to find all that at Glipho, at some point. Since I can’t post any of that here for a while I thought I might go back to writing about the minutiae of my life that you probably don’t care about. THUS. I hereby update the list I wrote ages go, to include things I have recently discovered to cause me acute distress, and things I was probably too embarrassed to include back then, but not longer have any shame over, for one reason or another.
Looking the wrong way down a one way street when crossing the road Today when I was crossing a one way street, a noise happened down the road so I looked, but it looked like I didn’t know which way the traffic was supposed to be going. I was embarrassed. This happens more often than I’d like to think. Welcome to my world.
Why have humans not evolved to find a better way of giving birth yet? I mean, I know that real evolutionary change takes hundreds of thousands and millions of years, but I really don’t know why this hasn’t happened already. Why can’t we lay eggs? It would hurt less and I would have to worry about vaginal tearing a bit less. Apparently vaginal tearing sounds like steak being carved. You’re welcome.
Washing-up protocol I don’t really mind when people leave unwashed plates stacked by the sink, or when people leave washed up stuff by the sink. However I feel very uneasy when the washing-up is stacked in a disordered fashion. Also, why do people wash spoons, and then leave them in a concave fashion on the draining board? THE WATER POOLS, IT STAYS DIRTY! One of the many things that keeps me up at night, unfortunately.
The fact that I may have begun my writing ‘career’ with an article about vaginas. There is a reason for this, which hopefully when it’s published online, you’ll all see and understand, but I’m still not sure that’s a first impression I want to make. But it’s a first impression I now have made.
Danny from the Script’s gruesome sex pout might have put me off sex forever I just don’t want to have to risk seeing that face. Ever. That’s understandable, right?
The sticker on the pillar in the library that I have to see every time I walk to or from my computer The acute distress caused to me by stickers has been well documented. This one in particular is right in my eyeline every time I walk from my computer in the library to get a coffee. It’s an apple sticker, which is pretty much the worst anyway, but it’s also peeling, worn and wrinkly, and it makes me want to stop living altogether. I have to encounter it every time I go and get coffee, which is flipping loads, and I can’t not look at it. Imagine how much coffee I’d drink if I wasn’t trying to avoid this sticker! Imagine how wired I’d be! Go on, IMAGINE.
Nick Clegg’s life It’s not really anxiety as such, but Nick Clegg’s life is so sad that it makes me feel sick with a sort of bleak melancholy for which there is probably only a word in Inuit. Today, Nick is angry because Michael Gove made plans to abolish GCSEs without telling him. Unfortunately, no-one in the Conservative Party cares, and public opinion about him doesn’t really exist anymore, since he stopped talking about tuition fees and started drifting around like a maudlin ghost.
Jamie Oates He’s been asking for a mention in my blog for a while so here it is. You give me anxiety, Jamie. Well done.
The TV show Girls Admittedly I have only seen one episode of this, but it bore such a bleak resemblence to my own life that I coudn’t bring myself to watch any more. I am still not sure if this is because it highlighted all the things about my own life that made it a little tiny bit dreadful, or because it scared me, on an existential level, to think that it might show me the outcome of my own life, before I’d actually lived it. I don’t know too much about physics, so I don’t know whether or not it’s even possible. But I’m scared it’d be like one of those episodes of Family Guy where they travel through time and stuff, and one of them ends up sleeping with Quagmire, and I really can’t think of an awful lot I’d less like to do (apart from sleep with Meg).
Living in a world in which John Terry has the capacity for joy It keeps me up at night that I have to live in a world where John Terry can have happiness in his life, when I fell a genuine melancholy over water stains on spoons. I suppose things like this offset this one a little bit though:
“I’m one of those people who lives in constant fear of being found out as not any good. Whenever I’m writing anything I’m just thinking “This is fucking shit,” any minute now someone’s gonna come and slap this computer out of my hands. And every week without fail, if I write a column, every week without fail I finish it and I go and I’ll turn around to my wife and she’ll go “How was that?” and I go “Just fucking shit, I’ve just written the worst piece of fucking shit anyone’s ever written, I’m such a cunt.” And then it’ll come out and people seem to think it’s okay, and so then I just think people are fucking idiots.”—
IT’S THE JUBILEE THIS WEEKEND!!! Did anybody know? It came to my attention a couple of days ago; I saw one or two flags plastered all over every single thing I’ve come into contact with. Needless to say I’m not a fan. I’d even go so far as to say that it’s completely tasteless for state and capitalist alike to celebrate hereditary privilege and an anachronistic, imperialist view of Britishness, at a time when the nation is suffering its worst recession since the 1930s; and when social immobility is at its most stagnant this century, set to stagnate further due to ever decreasing opportunities for the majority of us.
It all just seems a little bit too much effort for me as well. I mean, great, a four day weekend, but I’m a student. Being off work and lazy, but too poor to drink is pretty much a day in the life for me. To be honest, I doubt the Queen even wants all this trouble. She’s 86 years old, she’d probably be happy with and episode of Coronation Street, a hot chocolate and an early night.
I just don’t get it. But for some reason everyone is bouncing off the fucking walls about all this Jubilee business. Does the crushing inequality bother you? Nah two days off work MORE than make up for it. It’s like worshipping the sun, but a bit more pointless, because at least the sun brings us life, and warmth, and barbecued meat or something. Anyway. Here are a few things that would get me, and probably Elizabeth, on board for the Jubilee:
If the Queen was immortal. I just don’t think ‘being old’ is really worth congratulating someone for. I mean, I’ve got a lot of respect for old people - they’ve lived through a lot more and generally have a lot more insight into most things. But in the 21st century, old age is quite commonplace. Especially when you’re really really fucking rich. What’d make 60 years of Queenness worth celebrating, would be if she’d made it this far because she was immortal, like a timelord or something.
If the jubilee was hijacked by inveterate rebel Mario Balotelli He claims he’s not a rebel, but he’d cause a right scene, and I’d literally be dancing in the street if this happened. I’ll leave it to your imagination, but think: fireworks, sweets, giving loads of cash to tramps and just absolute extravagance.
If I was the Queen Of course I’d celebrate the Diamond Jubilee if I was the Queen! Because I’d be the Queen! It’d be a different country though, y’all would wish you’d codified the British Constitution while you had the chance. Just a heads up: I really like owls, Moomins, coffee, Russia and vegan food, so get used to all of those things.
If she took the opportunity to get a proper job I’d love to see Elizabeth pull a shift in Asda, bleeping can after can of SmartPrice beans through the checkout. Sweating behind the delicatessen’s counters. Doddering around being useless at the self-service machines. Or just do something displaying any humanity at all, maybe touring the homes of actual citizens. She’d never have experienced that much chipboard and misery before but I imagine she’d get used to it fairly quickly like the rest of us.
Unicorns Probably the only thing the Royal Family could pull out of the bag to really get me on board. I’d be SO psyched.
So that’s it, I’m coming out as a Republican. Although to be fair, I’m probably more interested in the Diamond Jubilee than the pissing Olympics.
Disclaimer: This article is automatically retracted in the event of the Eurozone’s collapse and subsequent mass starvation. Some/all of the following may not be true.
Speculation is growing that, contrary to the conventional wisdom that Greece’s membership is in danger following massive financial meltdown, the country is actually secretly fucking loaded, and plans to make a bid to buy the Moon. The controversial plans are allegedly intended to increase Greek diplomatic power by controlling everything in the world, via the Moon. “Tides, weather, tectonics, periods and wolves.” One source said “All of the major centres of power in the modern world, basically.” Allegations that none of Greece’s famed astronomers and scientists ever died, but are actually immortal wizards living on the moon are as of yet, unfounded.
When asked to comment, Greek Prime Minister Panagiotis Pikkramenos merely shrugged uncomfortably and avoided the question, asking “What? What is a Moon? I don’t even know what you’re talking about, jog on mate”, in a manner similar to many British MPs’ response to Jeremy Paxman’s questioning, fuelling rumours further, and causing a dramatic rise in share prices in Greek businesses.
But what would all this mean for the global financial market? It could mean a significant boost to European growth, as stocks in Greek produce such as feta cheese and Ouzo soar, and investors move to be in close proximity to the new epicentre of global power. Others, however, have forecast far more pessimistic outcomes. Financial commentators turned professional doom-mongers have predicted some sort of apocalypse, and have called for European leaders to “chip in and buy Mars” because of its connotations with war and the heavens. Nick Clegg, when questioned, looked even sadder than usual.
Some, including have predicted widespread street rioting across the austerity-hit European countries. Manchester youths, famed for their redefinition of August 2011’s riots to include use of axes and hockey sticks, have offered support an advice for this outcome: “Let’s be blunt shall we, there’s really no actual fucking point if you’re not going to get into a Footlocker. Looting a Tesco’s all very nice, but F&F’s trainers are shit.”
Concern was heightened further after British PM David Cameron appeared to answer all questions on the crisis with lyrics from Jay Z songs. When asked what if the speculative crisis would trigger a return from austerity to growth measures in the UK, he simply stated that “No place in the world can compare, put your lighters in the air, everybody say yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah”. The statement is believed to be with regards to Cameron’s constituency of Oxford, but no comment has been made by 10 Downing Street since the incident.It is still unclear how Cameron became familiar with US rap music.
The episode is reminiscent of the 2008 summit, outside which Sarkozy responded to questions about the future of European markets with: “I’m fuckin’ crazy with the kicks, call me Jean Claude”, believed to be a Tinie Tempah song.Psychologists area ttributing such outbursts to moments of severe stress, when a person’s mind actually begins to cry.
Obama seems to have taken a more measured response so far: “I mean, no one wants to see European populations go absolutely batshit. Apart from a few people in Middle America, but mostly, I’d say that’s a worst-case scenario. The speculation is, at the moment, uncertain, but if this Moon thing turns out to be true, I think we’ve still got a few of those Star Wars weapons Reagan was talking about. I reckon they could take out the Moon, and the Eurozone could continue to crumble unhindered. To be frank, it might not even be my problem soon anyway. I’ll have moved to Greece.”
Allegations that the Moon will be hollowed out for use as a twenty-first century Trojan horse are unfounded, financial analysts say: “As far as I can see, that’s fucking nonsense”, said one slightly harassed looking expert “It’d just void the warranty of the thing and you’d never get a replacement if the gravity packed in.”
I’m not going to lie, catching up with the Levenson Inquiry isn’t something I’ve quite got round to yet. Ask me what the whole thing’s about, and once I’ve mumbled something about ‘press standards’, I’m reduced to singing the hedging noise symphony through a scarf. You might as well ask a cardboard mask of Jedward. I mean, I KNOW it’s important, and I KNOW why, but this whole grubby, answerphone-y affair has been going on for so long that I took a break from being righteously angry about it when the News of the World collapsed, and getting back round to properly caring about it again feels like a dreary, nagging chore. Which I never got round to. Like the coursework I’m supposed to be writing.
But today, it became painfully clear that all it takes for me to regain some semblance of interest in an important and necessary inquiry into press standards and… stuff, is a perfect opportunity to mock someone on entirely irrelevant and arbitrary grounds. Brooks today revealed to the Levenson Inquiry that David Cameron had been using ‘LOL’ to sign off his texts to Rebekah Brooks as ‘Lots of Love’, until she explained to him that it meant ‘Laugh out Loud’. Which if you ignore the worrying context, is quite sweet and naive really, kind of like someone’s mum texting them to say “The cat’s died LOL” (So they’re really both a bit right about LOL, because people do actually do this).
It’s also part of a rich tapestry of Cameron’s history of being the absolute don of cool, as the champion of British film-making and independent cinema; through BFF-status with Barry O, and (oh my), devotion to the Smiths. Which is forbidden, making him twice as cool for doing it anyway (right?) I can almost hear him greeting his Cabinet at meeting with a desperately out-of-touch “Whazzzzuuuuuuuuup!!!”
But in the context of the fumes of sleaze emanating from the Inquiry, and souring in the rancid air around “DC”, Sith Lord and King of Lizards, it just becomes a tangible manifestation of the slightly pathetic and irritable attitude of “fuck it” that the whole affair seems to be descending into. It’s kind of like a routine check on someone’s answering machine uncovering an entire universe of bizarre and mildly ridiculous sex scandals. Figuratively speaking, of course. I actually feel a bit tainted just writing about it (particularly since, having totally ‘forgotten’ to catch up with the Inquiry’s revelations, it’s something I still don’t fully understand). Which is why I’ve chosen to be distracted by LOLgate (as people (me) are already calling it). I absolutely cannot WAIT for the fallout from this.
I bet Nick Clegg is crushed; like an increasingly desperate and despondent spouse, he’ll be wondering why HIS texts never ended with a tender ‘LOL’. Why did David never want to ride horses with him? What did it really mean when David said the song that reminded him most of Nick was Unhappy Birthday? He’s starting to think it might not have been ironic after all. I’m not sure how much sadder Nick Clegg’s eyes can get though; without actually becoming those massive, watery cartoon eyes anime characters have when they cry. His whole demeanour is already so bleak and joyless that small children cry when they see his sadness; I’m not sure how much more he can take.
On the other hand, Ed Miliband has undergone the sort of transformation Sandy made at the end of Grease, but without having to sellotape bin bags to himself to make a cat suit or anything! With the help of the haughty, entitled school bully caught canoodling with matron, Ed Miliband has somehow managed to go from perpetually terrified dork who isn’t quite sure how he made debate captain, to KING OF THE NERDS, who presumably now wanders around with a still mildly frightened, but now a bit smug too facial expression, because HE knows what ROFL means, and sometimes he even types ROFLCOPTER if something is really really funny.
But, like everything else the Coalition has done, it’s done less to bolster Miliband’s Magic Nerd King status, and more to expose Cameron as the reptilian overlord he undoubtedly is. With the exception of, well, quite a few people really, David’s managed to avoid the brunt of the fury he’s created so far, using every single person around him as a human shield, and deflecting derision onto professional sad clown Nick Clegg. But this Leveson Inquiry seems to me to be proof that he has literally run out of people to use as decoy mugs, and in a series of pathetically angry outbursts and embarrassing displays of creaky anachronism, his mask has less slipped, and more dropped from his face, clattered to the floor and shattered after a butter-fingered attempt to catch it again. I’m delighted.
After insisting that all women hate her for being beautiful, international super-beauty and villain Samantha Brick has struck again, this time claiming that some women, such as historian Mary Beard (initially attacked by acid-tongued TV critic and dreadful shitbag A.A. Gill) are "too ugly for TV". According to Brick, anyone who seeks out an on-screen career, is laying themselves open to “entirely justified” scrutiny of their appearance. Since she has worked behind the camera for nearly 20 years, Brick “knows better than most” that a TV presenter’s looks dictate the way they are viewed. And because she is incredibly beautiful, of course.
For the record, I’d like to point out that all individuals involved in the unfolding melodrama, in my opinion, are perfectly fine looking human beings, none of whom are too ugly for TV, with or without make-up. As someone who has been able to read for nearly twenty years, I “know better than most” that two out of the three, however, are categorically too horribly asinine and ultimately irrelevant to sustain careers in journalism, since the vast majority of their notability is based around launching vicious attacks on people’s appearances, like a pair of disgusting vultures.
In a rare glimpse of humanity, though, Brick admits “in fairness”, that most of the presenters she has worked with “on serious documentaries and specialist factual programmes such as the one Ms Beard presents — have been savvy enough to realise that if there is a visual impediment to their career, they fix it.” I’m not sure what examples she can cite here, nor how gendered these “visual impairments” were, but never mind, eh? It is for this reason, apparently, that Beard will be unable to become a prime-time broadcaster on flagship TV channels. Which, presumably is fine, since Mary Beard is a historian, not a TV presenter, by profession.
Brick wants to know, though, why Beard’s on-camera training wasn’t extended to wardrobe, hair and grooming, calling it the “greatest tragedy” of the whole incident. To be honest, I’d say a bigger tragedy is the fact that a historian not wearing make-up has generated more attention than history itself, because HISTORY IS REALLY GREAT YOU GUYS!! And because, as far as I’m aware, the focus of a public history programme is not the presenter, as the case could (albeit incredibly tenuously) be made for the chat shows Brick cites, but the subject itself. The importance of a presenter in this context, very briefly put, is in using their expertise and teaching skill to make a relatively obscure subject engaging and exciting to a new audience.
I’d like to eventually become a professional historian and I’d like to pre-emptively reserve the right to present my research wearing torn hessian sacks, with nettles in my hair and smeared with my own shit, if I so choose. But I digress. It’s hardly surprising, really, that The Mail should jump on criticisms of Mary Beard’s appearance, or that it should laud Samantha Brick’s carefully dedication to maintaining a vision of perfection. The majority of the Daily Mail’s coverage of women is based on a horrifyingly ruthless scrutinisation of the female form. I’d pick out an example for you but you can just have a look at the feMAIL section of the paper/website and pick more or less any of the stories on there.
What’s as concerning as meticulous but vaguely nonsensical criticism of ALL HUMAN WOMEN, is the Mail’s treatment of Samantha Brick herself. From all the TV appearances she gave in the catastrophic fall-out from her article about the absolute failure of modesty in modern civilisation, it became quite clear that Brick is much more attractive (subjective as it is) than the mug shots accompanying her pieces in the Mail lead us to believe. How two-faced. Coupled with sarcastically toned captions like: “Hard work: Samantha takes pride in her appearance. She works out - even when she doesn’t feel like it - she doesn’t drink, she doesn’t smoke… and rarely does she succumb to chocolate”, it’s ALMOST as if it’s a deliberate tactic to set her up? I bet Paul Dacre LOVES having Samantha Brick writing for the Mail; he’s got a real life woman to spout his bile about the unpalatable truths of being a real life human woman and not a figment of his dysfunctional libido, AND someone to public crucify for not meeting this ideal!
Although, as a woman who clearly has little respect for other women, or for her own talent and worth, maybe Brick is Dacre’s ideal woman?
I’d have a little bit more sympathy for Samantha’s merciless public ridicule if she didn’t continue to pity and deride other women she deems less attractive than herself? And why are women her only targets? Even she must have realised the irony of holding up the Hairy Bikers as an example of good viewing figures, to “prove” that it is Beard’s wild hair and ungainly posture holding back her televisual success. Yeah. I think, as a woman, it’d be easier to sympathise with her if she didn’t look down on the rest of us for not trying quite as hard to hate ourselves, and developed a little bit of compassion. Perhaps then the sisterhood would stop judging her so harshly on what she looks like, and instead accept her for who she is. Have a little humanity, Samantha. (And you too Paul. Actually, especially you, you CUNT.)
And would you look at that, I didn’t mention the coalition ONCE this week!
If a penis went to public school; and Kony 2012 revisited.
If a penis went through public school education and could dress and style itself, it would most likely end up resembling Boris Johnson; an unthinking, testosterone-driven, caddish buffoon who, inexplicably, was elected mayor of the Capital. Clumsily offensive and hopelessly prone to scandal, some of Boris’s ‘best bits’ so far include offending the whole of Liverpool in one fail swoop, using the word "picaninnies" to describe Congolese people, and aligning gay marriage and bestiality. Somehow, though, he manages to bumble his way through all these scandals, getting more and more ‘adorable’ every time. As Charlie Brooker perfectly summised this phenomenon: “OMFG LOOK AT HIS FUNNEEE HAIR LOL!!!! BORRIS IS A LEGERND!!!!”
This week, though, in response to allegations from Labour assembly member Jenette Arnold that Boris displays a “disrespectful and patronising way at meetings” to female assembly members, not shown towards their male counterparts, the Conservative mayoral candidate has denied being “remotely sexist”, claiming to Mumsnet (with a baffling lack of elaboration) that he is a “feminist”. This isn’t particularly convincing against a track record including the election soundbyte that “Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3.” Ha ha ha ha!! What a hoot!! Having a wife is like having a car!! ROFL. But to give him the benefit of the doubt, let’s assume that this is classic postfeminist wit, and look at these allegations a little more closely.
The irony of a blog complaining about oversharing.
When did sharing stop being a good thing and start being absolutely unnecessary and actually quite sinister? I mean, obviously in some ways sharing is still a good thing. No one likes the toddler who doesn’t want to share its toys; it’s always nice to share our opinions and experiences with friends; and sharing wealth by not letting certain members of society pay themselves obscene bonuses to stop them fleeing to hotter countries with more ‘forgiving’ taxation, keeps a whole population at a decent standard of living. Obviously that last one is a wildly misleading picture of British society, but you get the picture.
Yeah sharing’s generally alright. I don’t even have a real problem with the thoughts people share when their brains start leaking onto Tweets and Facebook statuses and the like (depressingly proven by the fact that I write this blog). There are studies that would beg to differ, but as far as I’m concerned, if you’re in control of it, then fair play. But why, for the LOVE OF GOD, has the introduction of Open Graph to Facebook made what we read, listen to, watch, play, take photographs of, become something that is shared by default?
In the first instance, I object (by default) to involuntary oversharing, because I barely gave a shit about that Facebook status informing me what drink you bought at Starbucks. Or even your daily pregnancy updates. Well done! You can reproduce! Hooray for biology! I just ate lunch, where’s my praise? I digress. If I barely cared about the banalities you actually chose to broadcast online, why do I care about things that you used to do in the privacy of your own home; listening to music, watching TV and reading the trashy articles in broadsheet papers (don’t pretend you don’t, we ALL DO, and I’ve seen it on Facebook.)
While Charlie Brooker has given the social downfalls of having your every movement automatically broadcast a pretty good airing, the impact of having our activities shared on social networking sites paints a fairly bleak future not just for our privacy, but for our ability to actively share what we want with our friends. By passively sharing our activities and our interests for us, Open Graph software "[opens] the door to a horde of zombie posts that will overwhelm our interest and deaden us… to organic discovery". And where Open Graph social reader apps, also through their one-time inconvenience of ‘allowing’ them to access our information, create a barrier to the active spread of information in more ways than one, the opt-out nature of recent adjuncts to the Facebook franchise, illuminates a simultaneous barrier to our privacy.
And it wouldn’t be too far-fetched to translate these trends into government policy. The government recently voiced plans to monitor the calls, emails, texts and web visits of the UK population - despite pledging in the Coalition Agreement to end unnecessary data retention and restore our civil liberties - and this looks like a proposal we’re going to have to struggle to opt-out of. Labour tried to introduce a similar measure in their last term, which was similarly criticised - by both Conservative and LibDem MPs, funnily enough.
The full plans of the current coalition won’t be outlined until the Queen’s speech next month, and looks set to face incredible opposition from within the Coalition, but it’s an unnerving development nonetheless, worrying 94.2% Guardian readers, if not most of the British population. Maybe opt out of sharing your Spotify playlists while you still can? Or pre-emptively opt into the Coalition’s plans to ‘share’ our online activities, like me. I think I’d rather just cut to the chase and email my entire internet history to the Home Office myself, along with a list of all of the things I’ve done each day. With pictures and videos where possible (winky face).
On a different, but related note; speaking of oversharing (and it should be old news by now, so I’ll keep this brief instead of spending a whole piece on it), I’m still hearing joke after joke about Tulisa Contostavlos’ and her ‘sex tape’ (read: betrayal and gross invasion of privacy). I don’t really understand why, since they’re not getting any cleverer - they are generally variations on: “Tulisa is a slut LOL”. I’m not really sure where the jokes about the other ‘star’ of the tape are though – or are dick jokes only funny when we’re not actually laughing at them? Disappointing.
Admittedly, I haven’t seen the tape myself, and have no desire to, since it’s not actually my business any more than staring into my neighbours’ houses with my nose pressed against the window, or, perhaps phone hacking, is my business. I have seen Tulisa’s response though and I’ve decided that I think she’s amazing. “A threat to the traditional post-sex tape narrative, were the woman is quietly disgraced”, Tulisa’s unapologetic response reasserts that the shame lies not with her, but with her ex-boyfriend, who chose to use her sexuality in their relationship, as currency against her. And her decision to stand up for herself on her own terms, through her own YouTube channel and without the influence of an editor or a pay-cheque is refreshingly genuine. I’ll take a feminist moment wherever I can get it, and I’ve really only got good things to say about a woman who has been able to handle herself with such strength and self-respect in the wake of such exploitation. Takes a lot of gumption. I guess that’s where sharing things gets good again.
Is the Hunger Games something to do with the Pasty Tax?
I’m starting this with a confession: I don’t know what the Hunger Games is. For the past few weeks, I’ve been vaguely aware of this film coming out, that everybody already seemed to know about and be excited for, and I’d never flipping heard of it. I pretended, for a while, that I knew what all the fuss was about. And when I say that, I mean I nodded blithely along to conversations on the topic, and then forgot it existed until the next time I saw a Facebook status, or was drawn into another conversation about this terrifying enigma.
It’s probably necessary at this point to admit that I didn’t even come close to Googling The Hunger Games, and still haven’t, because I really don’t care all that much. That said, a couple of days ago I snapped a little and begged for answers - all I got was that The Hunger Games is a trilogy of books and there is now a film about it. Great. So I took the title literally, and assume that the books are about games where you are hungry if you lose.
I’ve also managed to gauge that the plot(s?) involve some sort of post apocalyptic battle for survival, which is always good fun, and pretty much fits my ‘games about being hungry’ assumption, and I think this is really where I made a breakthrough: The Hunger Games is about the Coalition! If we take a closer look at the past few weeks, it all makes perfect sense.
The introduction of 20% VAT on hot takeaways, after all the debate, outrage, and glamorous photoshoots, is actually neither the end of a tax anomaly, nor an unnecessary strain on a consumer population already under enormous financial pressure. It’s just one of the rules of the Hunger Games, you guys! Dave’s just introducing a bit of healthy competition to our lives, because it’s fun! It explains so much about why Dave and the Gang were so excited to bring a bit of ‘healthy’ competition to so many of our other things - like the NHS. I mean, fair enough the stakes of Cameron’s Hunger Games are pretty high, but just think of it as a return to classical Rome! Only instead of fighting lions to the death in an extravagant amphitheatre, for survival and gladiatorial pride, we’ll be fighting each other to death in the street on our lunchbreaks, over hot sandwiches and basic public services.
That’s where this fuel ‘crisis’ comes in too, I reckon. I mean, on the face of it, Francis Maude’s warnings that the mere threat of a fuel tanker drivers’ strike would threaten lives was an ideologically driven tool to isolate and break the unions and avert industrial action, as well as “Totally unnecessary, totally self-inflicted, and quite frankly, a bit of a mess”. But if you think about all this rationally, Maude only created the panic-buying in the first place to try and hype up the Hunger Games! It’s all so obvious now. Taking away the public’s ability to travel independently adds an extra element of the Coalition’s beloved competition to the Games - it’s all in good fun, honest.
Well. All in good fun if you’re not actually competing, of course. If you’re a member of the feral elite whose attitudes manifest the rampantly materialism that has led to the inequality and aggressive individualism that characterise our Hunger Games, then you can sit back and enjoy the show! You’ll never have to enter the Colosseum. You just get to watch the rest of the populat-sorry - participants, turn on each other just to get by, safe in the knowledge that you don’t have to walk to Greggs for your overpriced lunch on your lunch hour, because the cafeteria in your office is serving up poached quails eggs with a side of grilled asparagus and a dressing of peasants’ tears today.
If you were thinking of drinking away the misery caused to you by a brutal competition for a cheap lunch while you’re working to avoid the repossession of your house, and the ability to maintain a mobile lifestyle, think again. With minimum alcohol prices set to rise above 40p per unit, you won’t even be able to partake in a comforting gin binge. Admittedly, as a postgraduate student without a loan, this probably hurts me more than most, but how else am I supposed to handle the nervous breakdown that will ensue when I graduate and a jobless reality deals me a bodypunch to the soul? That said, there is a get out of jail free card though, so at least theoretically we have a second chance to secure our own survival.
The pasty tax, granny tax (and just… the Budget), a minimum threshold for alcohol prices, and all this goddamn petrol panic buying are the rules of the game. If you can survive all that, you win, or something. But if not, you remain as one of the struggling, idiotic, panic-buying, rioting masses. And with higher education becoming more and more elusive, and even A Levels potentially becoming increasingly restricted to fit an already restricted University intake, we the players are going to find it harder and harder to get past these economic obstacles. No cheeky deals or cheats either guys, because the rulemakers will know about it; they’ll be reading your emails before long. There are no ladders in this game; only snakes. The odds for most of us in the Hunger Games just aren’t great.
So, if you lose these elusive ‘Hunger Games’, you are hungry/stranded/cold/uneducated/die. What is the prize if you win? Not just survival. Something better than that. Dinner with David Cameron. The chance to influence public policy! And the ability to perpetuate the Hunger Games for the next generation of bumbling proletariats that was unfortunate to be born into the same relatively unprivileged statuses as, well, us. I know I wrote about the inhumanity of this flawed and corrupt party financing system last week, but I see the point of it all now! It’s all part of the Hunger Games right? Right. It’s all about our feral elite.
By all means, correct me, since I still haven’t actually looked up what the Hunger Games actually is, but - am I close?
Solving Problems with Nuns, Dog the Bounty Hunter, and DC's Ma and Pa.
Theoretically, the introduction of ‘competition’ to the NHS will improve its efficiency and quality of services. As Charlie Brooker noted, if the businesses behind this competition acted as selfless nuns, this could potentially be the case. This raised an interesting point; what would happen to the world if other issues were addressed with things that they never would be addressed with?
If selfless nuns really did compete to run our health services
I’m not entirely sure how far this would differ from business competition; only time would tell if the competitive element wouldn’t bring out the worst in the nuns, or if their selflessness would override the competition, but I’m fairly sure there’d be a few important changes.
I can foresee two possible outcomes here. Firstly, the nuns would refuse to cut the corners necessary to turn over skyscraping profits, and would balance the NHS’s priorities fairly enough so as not to disadvantage any patients, but there would also be an uncomfortably Christian/Catholic edge to our health provision (which, ironically enough, is reminiscent of the NHS hospitals of its early days).
Alternatively, the nuns would ruthlessly trade off different standards to turn a profit, most probably with a maniacally ideological slant; cutting funding to contraceptive provisions in favour of supplying all patients rooms with the Bible channel on pay-per-view flatscreen TVs, and prioritising interactive religious icons in wards over abortion services. All profits to repairing that parish roof, of course, and once that’s fixed, the leftovers can go to international aid. As long as it’s not tackling the AIDS crisis of course. Food, not condoms.
I’d say the second option is probably the most likely. But at least, in the end, someone ends up vaguely better off, which is something, I suppose.
If Dog the Bounty Hunter was sent to Uganda to find Kony
Again, I’m not convinced that this would actually make a difference, since Joseph Kony is almost definitely not actually in Uganda anymore, so let’s just send Dog to the Central African region to try and get slightly better results.
I’ve literally never seen Dog fail to find one of his bounties, which might have something to do with the fact that all of Dog’s contracts are strung out crack addicts in Hawaii, rather than notorious war lords with child militias roaming half a continent, but I’m putting it down to skill.
Once Dog has found Kony, his overriding, classic American philosophy of second chances and nonsensical, irrelevant metaphors will inspire remorse in Kony, reducing him to one of the confused and weeping junkies in the back of Dog’s cars on a weekly basis. Maybe Kony will use his remorse to work with Dog, and help solve some of the numerous, complex issues at hand. Who knows?
I’ve actually just remembered that Dog the Bounty Hunter has got something of a racist track record so maybe he’s not the best guy for the job, but I’m sure if we just sent in the Lion from the Wizard of Oz and Gerard Butler’s character from ‘The Bounty Hunter’, the job’d get done.
If the party leaders’ parents were put in charge of party funding.
If the vast majority of us were party aides, or members of political party leaderships, or the like, the British political system would be absolutely void of sleaze. Just imagine the look on your mum’s face if she found out you’d been doling out “premier league” access to the (not the PM, but) David Cameron; policy feedback; or “bottom of the league” ministers for varying party donations! The I’m-not-angry-I’m-just-disappointed look wouldn’t even cover it. You’d be subject to the “top of the league”, I-lied-when-I-said-nothing-you-could-do-could-ever-make-me-stop-loving-you treatment, with all its furious sanctions: grounded forever, no pudding, no pocket money, no access to the outside world (let alone David Cameron), no school trips and Christmas is BANNED. The £250k wouldn’t even have been worth it for the former, the ‘just-disappointed’ look, let alone the withdrawal of unconditional love!
Somehow though I’m not sure if these, fairly reasonable, parenting sanctions translate to the upper echelons of our political elite. In an institutionally sleazy system of funding, permeated with various political dynasties and entrenched interests, I’m sure that the best we can hope for is just that these regulatory relatives would just cover up any financing ‘indiscretions’. So at least we could ignore the fact that our representative political institutions perennially protect the interests of our poor, privileged elite, whose interests are so under attack by the protesting, rioting masses. Like we did before this all leaked.
Now that I’ve finished that particular diatribe… to be honest, none of those suggestions sound particularly beneficial to the world. But they are all arguably more desirable than the privatisation of the NHS. Even the last one - it was happening already anyway.
I recently had an epiphany. I had just handed in a piece of coursework, when the secretary mentioned that she was going to need to find a bigger paperclip, since my submission was “weighty”. My heart stopped and my blood ran cold (in short: I panicked). “Is my essay bigger than all the others?” I asked, and for some reason, this was funny to unnamed-secretary AKA my nemesis. But it wasn’t funny. What if my essay was too long? Or it was on the wrong paper? And I failed my MA degree as a result? And ended up homeless and hooked on crank? I guess that could be funny to some people. Anyway the whole, harrowing experience made me realise: pointless anxiety is a really big part of my life. And as soon as I accepted this fact, I have been immeasurably more content.
So, I’d like to share a few of the little things I’ve been bogged down by recently, as a guide to anyone looking to become that little bit happier.
1. People eating loudly. IT’S NOT OKAY, YOU GUYS. IT’S JUST NOT. I don’t want to hear what you’re eating, and I can, even though your mouth is closed. PLEASE STOP.
2. Human bodily functions in general. You could probably trace this back to some fundamental difficulty I have with being a human being, but let’s keep this light and say I don’t like bodily functions.
3. The fact that on every coursework submission I have made this year, I’ve misspelt my tutor’s name as “Huges” instead of “Hughes”. I think about this AS I am filling in the cover sheet on my essay, trying to will myself to learn from my mistakes, just this one time, and try not to let the errors of the past destroy my future, but it happens EVERY SINGLE TIME and I just don’t know why. Freudian slip?
4. Aforementioned paperclip incident. Self explanatory; I’ve already traced the trajectory of having a weighty essay right to ending up a homeless crackwhore, so why wouldn’t this give me anxiety?
5. What if I have a bone infection in my knee and I end up crippled, or dead? Just to provide a little bit of context: 2 weekends ago, in Llandudno, I was toppled whilst giving my friend a piggy back and grazed my face, shoulder and knee. My knee became infected, making me disgusted with myself, so I went to the Doctor’s and they put me on antibiotics. Thus, my eyes were opened to a world of bone infections, septic joints, and potentially even death.
6. Not being able to find my holepunch. How will I be able to punch holes in things? I like to live tweet when this happens, really ups the ante.
7. I buy so much coffee from the Library’s Starbucks that the guy knows my order and makes it before I get to the till. I appreciate the efficiency, but so many things are weird about this that I don’t know where to start?
8. My own birthday. Is 4 birthday parties too many? Do I make a Facebook event? What if no one RSVPs? What if everyone RSVPs but no one actually comes? What if everybody I know and care about forgets my birthday? Nothing makes me more anxious than my own birthday.
9. I don’t think I care about Hollyoaks anymore. I watched the episode where George gets back from being trapped in a brothel, admits to the world that he was homeless and goes on a journey to find his past. I should have loved it. Everything about it was classic ‘Oaks. But I got… Nothing? When did this happen to me? And why? AM I OLD??
10. The idea of getting burgled/killed whilst in the shower/naked. I’m pretty sure I’ve talked about this before, but I just don’t know what I would do?? I don’t have a shower curtain in my house this year either, just a big glass panel so I couldn’t even turn the shower off and hide. SADFACE.
They’re all fairly specific anxieties but I’m sure you get the picture. Embrace your weird and be happy. Here’s a shorter list of things it’s probably best not to get bogged down about if you want contentment:
1. Not having any money
2. The future
3. Things that actually matter
People might tell you that these are the things worth worrying about, but I’d say that life’s much better when you don’t think about them. Until you hit rock bottom, and finding that the only way to get by is trapsing around stealing bread from market stalls with your dog/cat/animal familiar, Aladdin-style, because you can’t even make it on the game.
So that was my guide to how to be a little bit happier in your life. YOU’RE WELCOME, WORLD!
Over the past couple of days my Facebook, Twitter, and news feeds have all been inundated with people imploring me to watch a 30 minute film by the US charity Invisible Children, about the crimes of LRA leader Joseph Kony and the plight of the child militias in his ‘employ’. There has been the initial flurry of ‘activism’, the backlash, and the counter-backlash already. So, I wanted to investigate all this a little further, as there are a few things which I have found slightly jarring about Invisible Children’s campaign, and the support it has so far received.
Initially, it’s important to express that there are a number of heartening aspects of this sudden abundance of well-meaning concern. Firstly, it is endlessly important that attention is drawn to, and remains on, the critical and complex problems faced by the Central African people; and if there is one permanent result of this campaign, I hope that will be it. Secondly, I think it’s really important for me to state early on here that I fully support any efforts, from anywhere on the globe, to help eradicate child slavery and the use of child militias, as well as efforts to stabilise and aid unstable regions. Anywhere.
However, despite the undoubtable positive consequences that the KONY2012 campaign may have had thus far, there are a number of uncomfortable elements to this media storm which I’d like to discuss at further length. Pray, click ‘read on’…