The heart always skips a beat when a famous person’s name appears in Twitter’s “trending” chart. It usually means they’ve died or been implicated in sex offences. So when Rod Liddle turned up the other night, my immediate reaction was to wonder whether he’d punched another pregnant woman in the stomach. Thankfully no: he was trying to defend apparently racist columns on TV. I’m surprised he didn’t claim his column had been hacked, like he did when his account was caught posting racist bilge on a football fan forum.
Liddle is a terrible human being who writes terrible things on behalf of terrible people. And now he’s excreted another terrible book.
Is it any good? Of course it isn’t. But at least it means Fintan O’Toole can review it.
Never,â€ Rod Liddle writes in his jeremiad on the â€œbetrayalâ€ of Brexit, â€œhave so many blameless people in this country been held in such contempt, or been subject to such vilification by an elite.â€ Really? Who wrote in 2014 of Britain as â€œa nation of broken families clamouring about their entitlements siring ill-educated and undisciplined kids unfamiliar with the concept of right and wrongâ€? Who described with relish â€œthe hulking fat tattooed chavmonkey standing in the queue at Burger Kingâ€? Who characterised the British masses as inhabiting â€œa dumbed-down cultureâ€, being in thrall to â€œthe background fugue of idiocy, the moronic inferno, of celebrity fuckstoriesâ€, and spending their time â€œwatching TV, masturbating to pornography on the internet, getting drunkâ€? That would be Liddle in his last book, whose title, Selfish Whining Monkeys, may just possibly have had a slight whiff of contempt and vilification.
And that’s just the opening paragraph.