Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Gallowaygallowaygalloway, have you noticed how if you repeat a word often enough it loses all meaning?

Cohen in the Standard Watch ... Ooh, it's a stinker this week! It really is. Most notably, an otherwise pretty sane (if rather dull and worthy, plus it repeats that hackneyed Keynes quote that we had in the Observer a couple of weeks ago again) column about the PFI and hospitals in the East End, suddenly turns into a rant about Galloway two sentences from the end. Apparently Nick's friends who work in hospitals can't stand him either.

About the writeup of Nick's visit to the Fabian Society, perhaps least said soonest mended. All I can really say is "well. If everything really did happen exactly in the way you described it, then surely you won a famous victory and your enemies behaved shamefully".

The hack quotient is really quite high this week; we have the Keynes quote, the excerpt from the Lonely Planet Guide and the bit about George Clooney which is the journalistic equivalent of shouting at the television. Even the Michael Marmot factoid about life expectancy on the Central Line is getting a bit well used (btw, of course the rule only works east of Liverpool Street; oddly enough, life expectancy is not lower in Holland Park than Acton). Somehow I don't think Nick finished this one and thought "well I can be proud of that one, it will certainly feature in a collection of the year's best columns".


Anonymous Anonymous said...

re the Fabian Society "All the Liberals Go Beserk" - Nick
rather seeks to give the impression that he faced the audience of
baying Fabians alone, a lonely decent in the lion's den as it were. In fact the full programme of the event is online, Nick was only a panel member in a very full conference, and his fellow decent John Lloyd was by his side. On this account

the audience seems to have been rather friendly. Though they did have the nerve to ask Nick about his shifting position from Afghanistan to Iraq.

1/18/2006 03:52:00 PM  
Blogger Matthew said...

Blimey, that was atrocious.

BB - you might know the answer to this. What is the context of the Keynes quote?

1/18/2006 04:11:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While we're logging Nick's obvious quotes, he used the Marx "first as tragedy, then as farce" one in the Observer the other week.

1/18/2006 05:28:00 PM  
Blogger Matthew said...

Maybe the proprietors of AW could introuce a new feature, "Nick Cohen Hackneyed (that's next to Islington, I must tell you about the market one day) phrase forecasting competition".

1/18/2006 05:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's one of those annoying Keynes quotes that can't be tracked down to its source, like "The market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent". The original source AFAICT is Joan Robinson's "Economic Philosophy" so it was probably in some seminar in Cambridge or other and might have been about something pretty abstruse.

1/18/2006 05:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Oi, George! You’ve got a pretty face but no talent."

Bollocks! "O Brother, Where Are Thou?" was under-rated, in my view.

At least I've finally decoded what Nick means by "liberal" -- basically a leftie he doesn't like.

1/18/2006 09:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Out of sight" was also pretty good.

1/19/2006 04:40:00 AM  

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