Gretchen Carlson, chairwoman of the now-swimsuit-free Miss America, would very much like you to know that she isn’t just a pretty face. She also has a degree from Stanford and spent a year studying Virginia Woolf at Oxford.
Even so, let’s pause and ponder for a moment which elements on her CV got the studio executives most excited when considering her for her jobs on TV.
a) ‘Hey! She majored in “Organizational Behavior”!?! And she’ll be just great at explaining to our viewers the true significance of all that mopey, suicidal, proto-feminist stream-of-consciousness in Mrs Dalloway and To The Lighthouse!‘
b) ‘She’s blonde. She’s got a great body. She’s smoking hot. And by the way, did I mention that she’s blonde? With a name that makes her sound like she might even be Swedish, like in all the porn movies?’
Well, I’m no Miss America. (You need to be seriously brainy to be one of those these days. Apparently). But if I were to hazard a wild flying guess, I’d say the clincher wasn’t Carlson’s mammoth intellect.
An incredible total of nine people felt inspired to retweet this exciting message.
According to Cherwell, the portrait had only been up a week. And it was, somewhat ironically, the Geography faculty’s Equalities and Diversity Officer, Claire Hann, who made the supposedly contentious decision to put up the Theresa May portrait, as part of a celebration of the faculty’s female alumnae.
I am done with Oxford University. Possibly I have said this before but it can’t be said often enough.
Here is its latest outburst of progressive ridiculousness. It’s a letter, sent out by some pesky Social Justice Warriors at Queen’s College, protesting at a visit by Brendan O’Neill of Spiked.
Read it and weep.
Brendan O’Neill is speaking at Queen’s College, Oxford next week, and the college’s student organisation has sent out this bizarre warning. If you can’t have "contentious" discussion at a university, where can you have it? pic.twitter.com/7VEDDLWG0N
Today I am launching an appeal on behalf of a former British comedian called Robert Webb.
Unless you live in the UK you probably won’t have heard of him. But in his day he was very funny – first as part of the double act Mitchell and Webb, later in the even funnier series Peep Show (which really was much better than the travesty of a U.S. remake, honest).
Anyway, sadly, those days of being funny are long behind him. Poor Webb has fallen victim to a disease which has ravaged the global comedic community so cruelly and on such a scale that it could probably provide Tony Kushner with enough material to write another Pulitzer Prize-winning play.
This disease comes in several ugly mutations.
There’s the basic form – Cleese’s Disease – where you started out funny but you haven’t been for years because you now take yourself far too seriously.
There’s Schumer-Degeneres Syndrome, where you probably weren’t that funny to start with but you’re definitely even less funny now that you’ve become obsessed with hating your own white privilege.
There’s Linehan Complex, where your youthful frivolity has mutated into hideous arrogance and bitterness and extreme self-righteousness which leads you to lash out viciously on social media at anyone who doesn’t share your impeccably woke SJW politics.
Robert Webb, poor chap, has managed to contract all three variants of the disease at once.
There’s a scene in the movie Straight Outta Compton – (it’s OK: you don’t need to like rap to get this analogy) – where Eazy-E goes to confront his manager Jerry Heller.
Given that their band N.W.A have made so much money, Eazy-E wants to know, how come he is still living in penury?
Heller explains that “business is business.”
Eazy-E protests, as well he might, that this just isn’t good enough. Heller is his manager. It’s supposed to be his job to represent Eazy-E’s financial interests. N.W.A are one of the biggest rap bands ever. So where has all the ****ing money gone?
Heller repeats the only defense he has. “Business is business,” he explains.
In this scenario, for Eazy-E read: you and me. (Unfortunate because it means, shortly afterwards, we all tragically die of AIDs)
And for Jerry Heller, the incompetent, embezzling, total fail of a manager, read: the science community responsible for the great global warming scare.
Before I reveal their identities, let me give you some examples of just how successful they have been.
Hillary Clinton has called for an investigation into what Exxon really knew about climate change. (By weird coincidence, this came just after Exxon stopped funding an organization called the Clinton Foundation).
A bunch of climate alarmist scientists have written to President Obama urging him to use RICO legislation against corporations which may “knowingly have deceived the American people about the risks of climate change.” (Though they’ve been a bit less vocal since one of their number got himself embroiled in the “largest science scandal in US history”)
Two separate journalistic investigations have claimed that Exxon’s scientists “knew” about the threat of global warming as early as the late 70s and that the company is guilty of some kind of cover up. Now Scientific Americanhas jumped on the bandwagon too.
It’s all mendacious nonsense, as I explain here. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that unscrupulous lawyers, shyster politicians and green NGOs won’t go ahead and seize this flimsy excuse to intensify their war on capitalism in the guise of concern about the environment. Exxon, for example, may have no case to answer. But that won’t stop its operations, its reputation and its share value being seriously disrupted by a potential lawsuit, however ill-founded and vexatious.