Sunday, April 10, 2005

Shiraz and Chardonnay for all

Peter Hain has been talking more nonsense than usual. The Observer reports him as follows:
'There's now a kind of dinner party critics [sic.] who quaff shiraz or chardonnay and just sneeringly say, "You are no different from the Tories",' he said.
There is something ludicrous about the way the educated, metropolitan elite which runs this government pretends to be simple and men and women of the people. It is the spirit which saw Tony Blair telling his local paper in Sedgefield that his favourite meal was fish and chips, while admitting in an Islington cookery book that it was fresh fettucine garnished with an exotic sauce of olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes and capers.

Hain is particularly prone to this sort of thing. I remember a column he wrote for the New Statesman just after he had been selected to fight Neath. It contained every cliche of Welsh life, up to and including miners marching out of the pit with daffodils in their buttonholes singing "Myfanwy".

So let's have no more nonsense. New Labour grandees are richer and more effete than the great majority of their critics. They drink at least their share of Shiraz and Chardonnay, and probably much choicer wines too.

Left-wing politics should have at their heart the wish to see the finer things of life made available to all. The idea that wine is something funny or wicked drunk only by the rich is just the sort of attitude that Hain should be trying to change.

Unfortunately, although he began as a Young Liberal, he fell amongst Trots at Sussex University. He kept these prolier than thou attitudes when he made Blair his god rather than Marx.

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