I couple of days ago I suggested that Iain Dale was seeking to emulate Marina Snyde’s glittering career: now he’s taking the shortcut by quoting large chunks of her articles on his website. What can I say? QED.
As for the article itself, it starts off well: there certainly is a self-destructive streak running through the Lib Dems at the moment. I feel it myself. It is borne out of an anxiety that came out of the last general election. A lot of people are asking themselves “is this it?” A few gains here, a few loses here, the prospect of becoming the official opposition in the next 20 years IF we can hold it all together? Shouldn’t we be doing more?
This has externalised itself in the form of a lot of odd behaviour: the way Kennedy was treated, the way Kennedy was behaving, Mark Oaten full stop. But much as our political opponents would like to claim that this is The End, such periods of ennui and self-doubt have the potential to be incredibly creative. I have a feeling we may yet have a few surprises up our sleeves.
None of this of course was explored by Ms Snyde. Her article, apart from a couple of half-decent gags, just seems to fizzle out, which is par for the course. Snyde is an example of what happens when you combine Julie Birchill’s attitude with a posh middle class upbringing and remove most of the intelligence. The result is some weird parody that you can only stare and gawp at. Still, it’s nice to have a bit of attention.