I was keen to get hold of a copy of Douglas Murray’s The Madness of Crowds as soon as I read a bad review about it in the left wing newspaper The Guardian. I’ve always been of the opinion that anything a Guardian journalist finds “problematic” is almost certainly going to be something that I don’t find in the least bit problematic. So I checked on Kindle and on the internet and eventually decided to opt for the lazy man’s choice, an audible version of the book read by the author.

The wonderful thing about Murray’s book is that it so eloquently mocks all the hypocrisy that most sensible people find so abhorrent in modern society. All the current nonsense spoken and written about gays, women, race and transexuals is shown for the utter humbug it is. For example, when is a gay not a gay? When he is a supporter of the Republican party. When is a black not a black? Same answer. Murray (who is gay but will almost certainly be shamed by the gay “community” for his outlandish views) strips away the thin veneer of confected victimhood and exposes the verbose, phoney academics for the overpaid charlatans they are. It’s the sort of plain good sense that would get somebody fired if they were a politician, academic or worked for Google (as one London book review remarked) but in this case it’s the sort of plain good sense that will guarantee Murray a runaway best seller. It is, emphatically, not an argument against gayness, blackness, women’s rights or gender dysphoria, as much as  a witty and brave exposé of the bullying and hatred that so often results from the social media mobsters against those deemed as not possessing what is regarded as “the correct perspective”.

For example, last week it was announced that the world famous tenor Placido Domingo has withdrawn from a production of Macbeth at the New York Metropolitan Opera because of accusations of past sexual harassment. This will end a 51 year association with the company. If Domingo hadn’t withdrawn, either pressure would have been brought upon management to “fire him” or opera goers would have had to pass a cordon of snarling lefties (it’s bad enough that opera is an elitist “white thing”) and risk being spat upon. There is now pressure on other operas houses such as Covent Garden to cleanse themselves and to no longer use the 78 year old megastar in their productions. I doubt whether this will hit Domingo too hard financially but that isn’t really the point of the exercise. The nasty, embittered little reptiles in this particular case want Domingo to end his illustrious career on a low note and to be remembered not for his majestic Otello or Parsifal but for his disgusting disregard for women’s rights over the last half century.

Of the nine women who have alleged misconduct only one has been brave enough to identify herself. She is the former opera singer, Patricia Wulf (no jokes about crying wulf please) who is now a real estate agent in the US. Significantly, no court appearance has taken place but that’s no longer necessary in a free and fair society. Anonymous accusations, particularly against old white men, is all that’s needed to establish guilt, thus saving the already creaking legal system an enormous amount of money.

It may well be that Placido gave big slobbery kisses to his female co-stars and it may well be that he put his hand on someone’s knee during a lunch. It may also be that the “victims” were so terrified that their careers could end and they would be forced to become real estate agents that they remained mute for several decades against such deeply upsetting sexual advances. But we’ll never know because this is unlikely to ever reach a courtroom. Will I ever be able to listen to the final act of Lohengrin again without the image of a dirty old man coming to mind? Well, actually, yes I will because this is the biggest load of hypocritical bullshit one could imagine. Out of interest, how many 70’s rock musicians have been named and shamed by former groupies who allege “inappropriate touching”. Approximately none and that’s because they know that Joe Public would let out a loud guffaw if they said they innocently went backstage at a Led Zeppelin concert and were forced to shag members of the band. Having almost certainly planted a few slobbery kisses in my time and having put the hand on a few knees during lunchtimes past I live in perpetual fear of exposure. The really scary thing is I probably won’t remember their names.

And while we’re being so politically incorrect let’s move on to Greta Thunberg (or St Greta of the Warming Oceans as her worshippers know her). Staying with the operatic imagery for a while, Erda is the earth goddess who appears briefly in Wagner’s The Ring of the Nibelung. She is obviously Scandinavian because much of Wagner’s source for the four operas that comprise the Ring are taken from Nordic mythology. Wotan, the chief god, calls Erda out of her eternal sleep when he finds himself in a bit of a jam and asks her advice on the basis that she is the wisest being ever to have existed. The key thing here is that she isn’t 16.

I got into some much anticipated trouble on social media last week for mocking Greta’s well scripted outburst at the United Nations. Was I now reduced to bullying young girls who were nobly trying to save the planet? Well, actually no. What I was mocking is the room full of alleged adults who couldn’t recognize a deeply troubled and exploited child when they saw one and who encouraged her rant with their applause. On the matter of imminent global collapse I am ambivalent because I simply cannot believe that I am privileged enough, after millions of years, to be living during the 12 final years of this planet’s existence. But Greta may be right and I may be wrong in which case I won’t make any hasty arrangements for my 80th birthday such as paying for the venue upfront. If the damage already done to the planet is as bad as the teen prophetess seems to think it’s not going to be rectified within the next twelve years so we should all quit worrying. And if anyone knows where Greta’s stolen dreams and childhood are could they please return them to her….by sea mail obviously.

David Bullard is, well, David Bullard.

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