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Blaming the Parents

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If you haven’t read it already, may I recommend Nathaniel Tapley’s ‘Open Letter to David Cameron’s Parents’:

Why did you never take the time to teach your child basic morality?

As a young man, he was in a gang that regularly smashed up private property. We know that you were absent parents who left your child to be brought up by a school rather than taking responsibility for his behaviour yourselves…

Even worse, your neglect led him to fall in with a bad crowd.

There’s Michael Gove, whose wet-lipped rage was palpable on Newsnight last night. This is the Michael Gove who confused one of his houses with another of his houses in order to avail himself of £7,000 of the taxpayers’ money to which he was not entitled (or £13,000, depending on which house you think was which)…

But, of course, this is different. This is just understandable confusion over the rules of how many houses you are meant to have as an MP. This doesn’t show the naked greed of people stealing plasma tellies.

Unless you’re Gerald Kaufman, who broke parliamentary rules to get £8,000 worth of 40-inch, flat screen, Bang and Olufsen TV out of the taxpayer.

Read the full piece here.

The first couple of comments are worth noting too:

Hacked Off: Nice piece and right on the money. Just make sure you only address it to his mother. His father died last year and it would be a shame for a well-constructed argument to be debased by Tories crying foul on your insensitivity.

Nathaniel Tapley: Yes, I thought about that, but I think it underscores the point that whenever you blame someone’s parents you are doing so in utter ignorance of their situation. Whenever Cameron himself places the blame on parents, he has no idea if he’s talking to widows or the recently bereaved and yet he still feels quite confident in doing it. Yes, it’s crass and insensitive. It’s also exactly what he does.

Comments

  1. rpmcmurphy says:

    Let’s not forget Nick Clegg teenage arsonist: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7003100.stm

  2. Paul Taylor says:

    Is there a quote from Cameron talking about his teenage years or his time at university which could be contrasted with his ‘old enough to commit these crimes, old enough to face the punishment’ stance? I’m sure he’s talked about how he should be judged on his behaviour as an adult and allowed to draw a veil over youthful high jinx.

  3. loxhore says:

    when people point out that someone’s guilty of something they’ve criticised someone for it rarely feels like they’ve done that to condemn the badness of both. for if it did feel like that, how could it work as an intervention on behalf of the person criticised? but if it isn’t that, how can the guilt of the person criticising be taken to be their vitiation? cameron’s a hypocrite by his standards, but you’re saying that, but whether he’s a hypocrite by your standards isn’t something you should leave unsaid; pointing out that he’s a hypocrite by his too easily mutates into a way of ‘outsourcing’ the work involved in that. it’s a sort of substitution of the relished skewering of the corrupt morality of others for the need to be cogent about one’s own. don’t say ‘cameron loots too’. say ‘i support looting because’


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