Thursday, July 20, 2006

Nick likes a glass of wine

Sorry to any readers expecting scurrilous revelations here; it's just that Nick has written a column in which he says he likes a glass of wine. (Currently on the front page of the blog, but with no permalink due to some glitch or other; if I remember, I'll sort it out when the glitch is remedied). He is right about the pace of drinking at Lord's btw (a small AW prize for anyone who can tell us who Nick's friend is who's an MCC member).

In the main piece, Nick is having a go at the Brick Lane community who don't want Monica Ali's novel filmed. Fair do's here; he avoids the Islamophobic angle and (IMO correctly) assesses that this is the same campanilismo that had the burghers of Limerick protesting the filming of "Angela's Ashes". On the other hand, this degenerates rather into a boilerplate rant about liberal values, Roy Hattersley wanting the paperback edition of Satanic Verses banned and how the multiculturalists want to control what we can and can't see (everybody used to enjoy the Black & White Minstrels! And did you know poor Jim Davidson has been driven into bankruptcy!). The "authoritarian version of multiculturalism" that he is talking about really does not exist, though I suppose that pretending it does is a good idea if you want a job on the Daily Mail.

Apparently it is only since the death of Diana that people have got angry about the Tube being unreliable by the way, who knew?


Blogger Simon said...

"There has been no robust response from the government to the threats to Jerry Springer: the Opera from Christian extremists or to this summer’s exhibition of paintings in London by the Indian artist MF Hussain by Hindu extremists."

Most of the protests about Jerry Springer: the Opera were well within the law. I imagine if any had fallen outside of it, that would have been a matter for the police, rather than the government, though perhaps Nick thinks they mean the same thing.

7/20/2006 09:47:00 AM  
Blogger Simon said...

Oh and Roy Hattersley condemned the Satanic Verses not as a means of introducing 'authoritarian multiculturalism' as Labour party policy but because his seat had the highest Muslim population of any constituency in the UK and, if he hadn't done so, he probably would have lost it.

"the party has adopted an authoritarian version of multi-culturalism which allows the loud-mouthed and the menacing to dictate what the rest of us can read and see."

This just isn't true, is it? I can look at the Mohammed cartoons with a couple of clicks of a button, and I can buy the Satanic Verses in Waterstone's.

7/20/2006 09:50:00 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

I claim my prize. I think it's Francis Wheen.

7/20/2006 10:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ahhh, Wheen. And there was me thinking it might have been an "informal chat, not trying to headhunt you or anything old chap" meeting with Peter Oborne.

7/20/2006 10:40:00 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

Well it might have been Oborne. My only 'evidence' is a) Nick's probably a friend of Wheen's as Wheen has shown pretty solid Decent credentials in the last few years (and has signed the EM), and b) A friend of a friend is a friend of Wheen's and goes to Lords with him (though I don't know if he is a MCC member).

7/20/2006 11:07:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

no, Wheen is much more likely - they are definitely mates. Wheen is a mate of Aaro too and a cosigner of the infamous "Kamm Letter" that caused Ian Mayles to question his own will to live.

7/20/2006 11:43:00 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

Is there any truth in the rumours that the Aaro/Wheen/Kamm letter has been sent to both the Israelis and Hizbollah in an attempt to difuse the current situation?

7/20/2006 12:09:00 PM  
Blogger Sonic said...

The "Euston Manifesto"?

Now that rings a bell somewhere, didn't it used to be important or something?

7/20/2006 09:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But Francis Wheen lives in Islington! At least he used to. (I remember that he wrote about how cool it was in the Grauniad in the early 90s.) And I think, given that he's a Private Eyer, that he's public school as well. He also works in the media.

Nick *can't* be mates with him. He's the enemy.

On second thoughts, Matthew is probably right.

I quite liked Nick's piece; at least now I've got an idea who he's talking about when he's ragging multiculturalists. As long as it's New Labour, he can hate away. This is the link, BTW. (I got it off my RSS feed.) Anyone who talks about a "violation of the human rights of the community" is clearly talking out of their arse, so I'm rather sympathetic to Nick on this. But I think he's wrong about "insecure immigrant communit[ies]" -- people don't like being put on display as items of anthopological interest. There's a natural fear that filmmakers are going to make a district look merely comic. I'm sure that would apply in the old Jewish East End too, and I'm sure there were people who complained that Dickens' wasn't as objective as it might have been. Anyway, people don't trust the media, so I'm told:

As a Scottish nationalist, he felt more keenly than most the suspicion of central government, the London media and the City that is the dominant national mood.

That goes for the East End too. Heh.

I think "another work by a young Asian woman that old Asian men objected to" is a nice line, but most of the vocal Asian protestors are young men.

Also this is hilarious.

The Guardian [London news organsiation] is an alarm signal.
For any ‘author’ to be backed in the way that ‘Monica Ali’ has been backed by the Guardian there must have been something very wrong in whatever gave rise to the discontent around Monica Ali.
And as historically the case, the Guardian failed to recognize the cause of the concern and went about weaving the concealment of wool around the issue!

7/20/2006 10:23:00 PM  

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