OK, how many seconds do you think Ed Miliband’s spokesman took to say the Labour Party leader wouldn’t be commenting on the Mail on Sunday‘s latest tale of his schooldays at…. if you don’t know which school in Camden he went to by now then you are living in a world without newspapers, TV, internet and politics A-level teacher David Miliband who reminds everybody where he and his brother were pupils roughly three or four times a week.
With admirable craft, the paper managed to turn a nasty playground spat from almost three decades into an early example of failed multiculturalism.
We had a bit of a ruck in 1984 in the playground. I just lost my rag that day. He was a very opinionated person back then. I am not proud. We did not agree on something and I belittled him and dismissed him as if what he said was a stupid comment. In retaliation, he lashed out with verbal abuse. He called me a Turkish b*****d so I hit him. I gave my reasons as to why I did it but was dismissed and I was suspended for three days.
You can just imagine the grimace spoiling the spokesman’s face when the call came down the line. Still, when you see the aching chess dweeb picture the MoS used alongside this public Facebooking, you can’t help but think Charlie Brooker, even with his new showbizz haircut, had it right in The Guardian today when he summed up what so many must have thought before:
Poor old Ed Miliband. Those aren’t my words. Those are the words your mind thinks whenever you see him on television. And then you feel bad for thinking that, which makes you feel vaguely sorry for him again, and that in turns feeds back into the initial pity you experienced, and the whole thing becomes a sort of infinite commiseration loop that drowns out whatever he’s actually saying and doing.