A tweed-cloaked vampire

A tweed-cloaked vampire

A couple of months ago, Campaign magazine decided to feature frog-faced demagogue Nigel Farage on the front cover of their ‘Love & Hate’ issue. They used Charlie Clift’s portrait of the Brexit Party dictator, which shows the smirking scourge of ‘the elite’ in a pinstripe suit, sporting £200 cufflinks, drawing on a £20 Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure Especial Cigar. That Farage has managed portray himself as a non-elite, fighting for “good, ordinary, decent folk”, is a unique ‘brand’ of deception in itself.

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My milkshake brings all the radicalised Remoaners to the yard

My milkshake brings all the radicalised Remoaners to the yard

At 7am on the morning of the European Elections, 81-year-old Don MacNaughton, a retired army veteran and Brexit Party supporter, was setting up as an election teller outside a local polling station in the Garrison town of Aldershot. Half an hour later, “some yob…mid-20s” apparently took exception to his Brexit-blue rosette, proceeded to verbally abuse him, gave him the finger, then, after a ten minute trip to the Co-Op down the road, returned to hurl a milkshake over him. The assailant then scarpered, leaving Don with his shirt and regimental tie covered in strawberry goop.

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Is this who we really are?

Is this who we really are?

I recently saw a video of a threadbare crowd gathering in Swindon town centre, awaiting the arrival of UKIP’s MEP candidate for the south-west of England: Carl Benjamin.

The Swindon Advertiser (circulation: 8,191) described Benjamin as “Rape tweet UKIP hopeful” (a wonderful ‘current position’ update for his LinkedIn profile) who made a “rock star-style entrance” to launch his campaign. In spite of the scene being eerily reminiscent of the time Robert Plant strutted into town carrying a folding patio chair, ahead of an electrifying performance in front of the Swindon branch of Vodafone, Benjamin’s “cheers of support” consisted of approximately 10-20 people chanting “Sargon! Sargon! Sargon!”, which was no louder than a group of imbeciles in a pub beer garden egging on a friend to gulp down a pint of his own piss.

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From Pickle to No Deal Brexit

From Pickle to No Deal Brexit

In January 2011, as a lone security guard sat idly watching television in a small portakabin, a group of urban explorers known as the ‘London Consolidation Crew’ quietly slipped, undetected, into what was generally considered to be one of the most secure sites in the capital: The Shard.

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Fucking awful people

Fucking awful people

“A woodlouse munching on a fleck of shit on the floor of a toilet cubicle” may sound like a trigger phrase for an MK-Ultra assassin, but it’s actually something I witnessed once during a quiet trip to the loo at work. It was a truly depressing sight. A lone crustacean with possibly the most miserable existence on the planet, unknowingly providing me with an analogy for what every day on Twitter would feel like in the future: existing on a diet of shit, but longing for someone to drop a fragment of Twirl.

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A dispatch from my safe space

A dispatch from my safe space

I hate all this bollocks about ‘safe spaces’, as if the very notion of having somewhere you can go to be content and happy, largely insulated from the hate, fear and bullshit of the world, is somehow indicative of weakness or timidity, or an unwillingness to engage. “Get back to your safe space, snowflake!” seems to be the insult du jour on social media at the moment – often, but not exclusively, used by emboldened right-wingers (let’s call them ‘red caps’) who just love snappy slogans (Take back control! MAGA!). However, it completely loses its impact if, like me, you think of it merely as a kind-hearted suggestion. “Get back to my safe space? Thanks, I will! It’s cosy there and we have Hobnobs.”

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The new normal

The new normal

Last Friday felt a bit like Invasion of the Body Snatchers, where everyone appeared to look outwardly normal but you knew that some of the people you were brushing shoulders with had voted to leave the EU. It was strangely disconcerting.

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