The last few weeks have seen several examples of our glorious leader apparently putting his foot in his mouth by saying bad things. We had his comments about refugees on Holocaust memorial day, his bunch of migrants comment about the people in Calais. Now we have had his disability benefit is a ‘Lifestyle Choice’.
The rest of parliament has been quick to pick up on these comments, as have the old media and the new media, front pages, headlines and social media buzzing with how nasty Dave was being. Calls for him or number 10 to withdraw the comments or offer apologies were and still are being ignored.
So we have our Prime Minister opening his mouth and saying things that are so wrong and so catching that they become sound bites and suddenly that is all everyone is talking about.
Which is handy for the government and why I think he probably has a little list of these comments, these sound bites, thought up for him by some faceless media adviser and ready to be used when needed.
The thing is our media has a terribly short attention span, a few days and they have moved on the something else, everything more than a few days old is history and to be forgotten. So a nice juicy apparent slip of the tongue from Cameron fills the news for a day or two until some celebraty event comes along to attract attention, anything else going on at the same time is left unreported because that comment is just so contencious and newsworthy.
Which is why I say apparently.
Cameron apparently said something by mistake.
Nope, he wasn’t flustered or angry, he wasn’t caught off guard, he was, in every case, calm and controlled. He deliberately opened his mouth and spoke. A paranoid person could even so his comments were premeditated.
Well since I am paranoid I’m certain they were prepared and ready to be deliberately used because it has happened a number of times now and in each case the supposed accidental comment has completely eclipsed everything else in the news.
His bunch of migrants comment hit the news, a motion was made in parliament calling for it to be retracted, everyone was outraged and very vocal on the subject, social media was full of it as was a lot of the media.
The thing is his little ‘Accidental’ sound bite came at a very convenient time, it hid a lot of bad news. Court rulings, international condemnation of Tory policies, arms deals to oppressive regimes, trying to eliminate poverty be redefining it out of existence and more.
All forgotten in the rush to condemn Cameron for his ‘Accidental’ sound bite. Which is why I’m sure it was deliberate, given the Tory party and governments long history of hiding bad news by either distracting people of by sneaking the news out where people won’t notice it.
Now his latest comment, that being poor or unemployed and needing benefits was a ‘lifestyle choice’.
This came while he was defending the cut to ESA payments that had been blocked in the Lords, he refused to back down and drop the cut and instead came out with his ‘Lifestyle’ comment.
So now it’s all everyone is talking about, yet another attack on the poor by the out of touch Tory government, more oppressing the poor, more cruelty and suffering heaped on those who need help the most. All of which is true, this is what the Tories in general and IDS specifically do week in, week out. Anyone who is caught in this system gets treated this way.
But the thing is that while contentious, I would say shameful but we are talking about the Tories here, they wouldn’t understand shameful if they had a professor of English to explain it to them, it is also far less important that the other news that it has eclipsed.
Dave’s deal with Europe is something of a PR exercise, the usual smoke and mirrors with the bad news in very small print which says the whole thing is going to either do nothing or make things worse. With an EU membership vote promised for this year and the grand presentation of Cameron’s negotiating for a better deal to remain in being a complete and utter bodge job what is everyone talking about, benefits are a lifestyle choice.
The media (old and new) is distracted, the opposition is distracted, the public is distracted, everyone is looking at the magicians right hand where they are supposed to look and ignoring the left hand pushing the rabbit into the empty hat.
Like using shiny things to distract children and magpies.