Jet Dough

From The Times, August 2nd:

The Duke of Sussex has given a barefoot address about the need to save the environment at the star-studded Google Camp being held on Sicily, it has been reported.

The duke is said to have given an impassioned lecture at the three-day event hosted by the internet giant and which has a climate change theme, according to the Page Six gossip column of the New York Post.

Harry reportedly covered much of the same ground that he did in his interview with British Vogue’s September issue, which was guest-edited by his wife.

The duke told the magazine the couple would not have more than two children, and spoke about “terrifying” effects of climate change.

From the BBC, August 19th:

Sir Elton John has defended the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s use of private jets

The royal couple have faced criticism after newspapers claimed they took four private jet journeys in 11 days, including to Sir Elton’s home in Nice.

From Elton John himself:

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

“[An indulgence is] a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and all of the saints”

In other words, you can reduce the time spent in purgatory for your earthly sins by coughing up some cash for the church:

Trading in indulgences was big business before the Reformation. Buying indulgences was expensive and thus reserved for the rich, who had the money to buy them or to go on a pilgrimage to Rome or Santiago del Compostela.

Environmentalism really is a new religion, isn’t it?


Willow Talk

With great power comes great responsibility:

One-word oxymoron: polyfidelitous. Yep, it’s another self-justifying polyamorite. Someone hit that big red Tim Newman alarm button.

So let’s take a look:

Willow noted that because divorce rates are so high, it suggests that there is something left to be desired when it comes to traditional relationship structures in the modern age. She expressed that polyamory would probably be more common if couples could let go of their own fear of losing ownership their partners:

Right, but:

Yesterday, on the latest episode of Red Table Talk, 18-year-old Willow Smith kept it a buck about how she really feels about monogamy, and challenged us to see it differently.

We’re supposed to take relationship advice from an 18-year old? One who says:

My last relationship was fueled by jealousy and blind rage; checking each other’s phones and fighting about our findings, angry at social media interactions and flirty onlookers alike. It took me a while to realize that weren’t in love, we were in possession of one another, totally and completely.

Such wisdom! The irony is that Willow Smith is the daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett, who have been married for 22 years. Given her father’s looks and popularity, and considering the usual longevity of Hollywood marriages, perhaps Willow should quit talking to gullible fools in the media and have a word with her parents about what makes a relationship work. Still, I guess taking relationship advice from teenagers is less harmful than promoting sex work to them.


The friend of my friend is my enemy

So while you have fake conservatives making sure nobody to the right of Tony Blair or George W. Bush can gain traction anywhere without being branded a racist and blocked from social media, the right also has another problem and that is an inability to pick its battles. Julia Hartley-Brewer is one of the leading advocates for Brexit, she rails against political correctness and argues in favour of free speech, and believes Britain’s immigration system needs a radical overhaul. All good, right?

Actually, no. Yesterday some hack in America posted on Twitter a short clip of a Trump speech in which he called asylum-seekers “animals”. Only Trump was specifically referring to MS-13 when he used that word, and the video had been edited to obscure that fact and the “asylum seekers” bit added by the hack. It was also not new; it dated back to May 2018 when the left pulled the same trick. In other words it was straight-up fake news. Here’s how Julia Hartley-Brewer responded:

When people called her out on it, she doubled down:

Actually, Trump doesn’t go around calling people animals. This is yet more fake news, but it’s also a sign of something more worrying, especially if you’re conservative. If you are pro-Brexit, anti-PC, and want stronger immigration policies I’d have thought Trump’s your man – especially if he’s specifically talking about keeping unspeakably violent criminals out of the country. If Britain does exit the EU, who do they think their biggest ally’s going to be? Who is their main target for a trade deal? Brexiteers should be doing everything they can to get Trump interested in their cause, and they should be thanking their lucky stars someone naturally sympathetic to them is in the White House instead of a wet globalist like Obama who detests Britain and loves the EU.

I’m going to be charitable and assume Hartley-Brewer is genuinely conservative and isn’t just saying this stuff to ensure the London liberal set keep inviting her to dinner parties, but what I’m going to say isn’t much better: she’s simply not very bright when it comes to politics. If conservatives and right wingers want any chance of clawing back lost ground in the culture war, they’re going to have to be an awful lot smarter than this. Firstly, that means being fully focussed on what you want. If Brexit is your priority, concentrate on that, and don’t concern yourself with matters unrelated to the task at hand. Otherwise there’s a good chance you’ll inadvertently strengthen your enemies and undermine your own cause. What did Hartley-Brewer expect to achieve by joining the left in bashing Trump? There’s simply no upside here, only downsides. And it’s not like Trump doesn’t use Twitter and has no idea who’s saying what. She’s blundered straight into a bear trap set by her enemies. If this were a real war, she’d be written off as a liability. Now I’m not saying Brexiteers and conservatives should agree with Trump or even like the man. But there is an option to, you know, just shut the f*** up. You don’t actually have to comment on everything; sometimes silence works wonders. If you don’t learn to pick your battles, don’t expect to win any.

Secondly, conservatives need to recognise who their true allies are. Churchill didn’t like Stalin very much, but realised he needed him to defeat Nazi Germany. There’s plenty of time for drawing up principles once the war is won, but while it’s ongoing you do whatever’s necessary to win. If British conservatives can’t stomach Trump as an ally, they’ve already lost (again). As I’ve said before, there are things to dislike about Tommy Robinson but if British conservatives find themselves unable to throw their weight behind him when he’s being hounded by the government for speaking his mind about immigration, they ought to get ready for another few decades of cultural Marxist domination. They also need to jettison the fake conservatives and those who lack the stomach for the fight. The sort of wet conservatives who appear in the mainstream media or in Parliament can be likened to America’s supposed allies in their mission to Afghanistan: the German military wouldn’t go out at night, the French complained the country was unsafe, and the Norwegians said they’d provide a medical tent. Only the English-speaking countries – the UK, Canada, and Australia – were prepared to get stuck in, kill some folk, and take casualties of their own. The rest are free-riders waiting to step in and take charge once the enemy is defeated, or simply carp from the sidelines.

If the culture wars were a boxing match, the referee would have stopped the fight years ago. Conservative fortunes won’t improve until they acknowledge this and change their approach entirely. They need to fight smarter. This means focusing on the handful of things they really want, seeking allies who want the same things, and getting rid of the grifters and hangers-on. Above all, it means shutting the f*** up for most of the time.


Slow Rogan

I do like Joe Rogan’s podcasts, mainly because he is able to get the best out of the many interesting guests he has on. I reckon he’s able to do this because he’s a genuinely nice, friendly bloke, but also because his guests are usually a lot smarter than him (Bari Weiss being an obvious exception). This means he asks a lot of questions but doesn’t get into lengthy arguments.

However, I’ve noticed his opinions tend to drift between shows, aligning with those of his guest, and he is infuriatingly unable to connect dots. He frequently lambasts Trump’s comments about Mexico and his proposed wall, and appears to be in favour of large scale immigration. Two weeks back he had on a chap called Ioan Grillo, a journalist who has spent years in Mexico reporting on the drug war, cartels, and accompanying savagery. Rogan once again mentioned Trump and the wall in a negative context, before Grillo told a few stories about the cartels which sounded like something out of Game of Thrones. Rogan then said words to the effect of:

“Isn’t it strange this is all happening just over the border from Texas, which is as safe as can be? It’s as if there’s an imaginary line in the sand across which everything just changes.”

Well yes, it’s almost as if Mexico is an altogether different country than the US populated by people with a very different history and culture. Taking this radical idea a little further, one might argue that it might be a good idea if this separation was maintained by a robust border – maybe a wall? – which would keep the populations apart and stop Texas and the wider US becoming more like its southern neighbour.

He’s also fond of asking why the US government doesn’t declare war on decrepit housing projects and miseducation in the ghettos (meaning, sort out African American problems) by spending millions of dollars in a targeted campaign. None of his guests has yet pointed out that billions have been spent trying to do just that for decades, to absolutely no avail. He genuinely thinks it’s never been tried.

Like I said, his podcasts are great but he can be infuriating at times.


Gangsta Rat

Even back when I was a student I didn’t know who half the contemporary music stars were; nowadays I barely know any of them. For instance:

Rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine appears on the verge of receiving a prison sentence that is significantly less than the minimum term he would have received after pleading guilty to a litany of crimes, though he may need witness protection.

The singer signed a plea deal with federal prosecutors in Manhattan whereby he admitted to various crimes, including racketeering, conspiracy, weapons possession, drug trafficking, and others.

He sounds a little more full-on than S Club 7.

In 2015, he was sentenced to probation for appearing in a video in which a 13-year-old girl performed a sex act on another man.

Appearing in child porn videos doesn’t seem to harm your career if you’re a rapper.

Federal prosecutors say that the information Tekashi has given them may require that he be placed under witness protection since he is believed to have implicated individuals involved in extremely violent crimes.

Witness protection? So they’re gonna send this guy to Buttfuxville, Nebraska (Pop. 1,357) and expect him to blend in.Maybe he can get a job in a nursing home?


Nigerian Male Scam

Well, it seems the two white supremacist who tried to lynch Jussie Smollett have been caught:

The two Nigerian brothers arrested over the Jussie Smollett attack are actors Abimbola ‘Abel’ and Olabinjo ‘Ola’ Osundairo, can exclusively reveal.

The pair were picked up by police at Chicago O’Hare Airport on Wednesday as they arrived back in America after visiting family in Nigeria to be questioned over the January 29 attack involving the star.

Here’s the pic of them that’s doing the rounds.

I suppose it’s taken the police two weeks to capture them because they first had to rule out all the white white supremacists on their books before sifting through the black white supremacists. Of course, Smollett could have saved police a lot of time by telling them he not only knew the two brothers, but paid them to fill him in:

Jussie Smollett paid two brothers to stage an attack against him, directed them to buy items used in the alleged assault and actually rehearsed it with them, sources say.

Sources say at least one of the brothers bought the rope used in the incident at Smollett’s request. The sources also say the “Empire” actor paid for the rope, which was purchased at the Crafty Beaver Hardware Store in the Ravenswood neighborhood the weekend of Jan. 25.

The crafty what?

Sources said one of the brothers held the rope and poured bleach while the other wore a plain red hat and yelled slurs at Smollett.

The sources say the red hat was bought at an Uptown beauty supply store and that the attack was supposed to happen before Jan. 29.

So pervasive is MAGA culture the conspirators couldn’t find a single MAGA hat in the whole of Chicago.

Smollett claims two men attacked him in Streeterville early Jan. 29 as he was heading to his apartment. He said they yelled racial and homophobic slurs at him, poured a chemical on him and put a rope around his neck.

American police might be many things, but they’re probably not stupid. They will see real crimes 24/7 and hear so many witness statements they probably know how a story ends before it’s even begun. My guess is if you go in with a cock-and-bull story they’ll spot it immediately. I expect they investigated it as normal even if they knew where it was heading.

Rather than this incident being indicative of escalating racism in Trump’s America, I see it more a confirmation of how spectacularly dumb actors are. Why did he need to hire two Nigerians, stage an attack, and go to the police? The lefty media will believe anything, he could just as easily have headbutted a door frame and gone wailing to CNN about Nazis without tangling himself up with the Chicago PD. This is the chap who many high-profile Democrats thought was a role model. Which I suppose he is, if you vote Democrat.


Pink beats black

The BBC brings news of an interesting play in the great game of victimhood poker:

US comedian and actor Kevin Hart says he has stepped down from hosting the 2019 Oscars following a controversy over homophobic tweets.

Kevin Hart is a straight black male, and if he’s being fired over homophobic tweets it suggests sexual minorities trump ethnic minorities.

The choice of Hart for host was only announced on Tuesday.

But tweets from a decade ago emerged of apparent anti-gay slurs, sparking calls for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to drop him.

Rummaging through decades-worth of social media postings in the hope of unearthing something to be outraged about seems to have become a popular hobby for some. As far as I can tell, this is the offending tweet (which isn’t a decade old, BTW):

My guess is if he’d made a joke about a gay white man he’d have got away with it, but having denigrated all gays his skin colour wasn’t enough to save him. Not if the lily-white, ultra-woke Oscars committee are the ones making the decision, anyway.

In 2015, by which time his profile had risen significantly, Hart addressed the comments in an interview with Rolling Stone.

“I wouldn’t tell that joke today, because when I said it, the times weren’t as sensitive as they are now,” he said.

Too late fella, there’s no unringing that bell. What’s amusing is, generally speaking, the only people interested in LGBTQ rights are white people living in the developed world. I’m not sure American blacks were ever on board with homosexuality, hence their rap lyrics and Obama disavowing gay marriage until his second term in order not to upset black, church-going conservatives, yet progressives always seem surprised to discover this. And are Asians, and those people wandering over the border from Mexico, strong proponents of gay rights? Those Somalis in Minnesota? I doubt it.

So the organisers of the Oscars have signalled their non-racist credentials by hiring a black guy to host them, only to find he uttered 2018 wrongthink in 2011. They consulted with Twitter and found, under the ever-shifting rules of victimhood poker, his hand lost and he has to go. As contemporary culture becomes increasingly dominated by conflicting and overlapping tribes of lunatics each seeking to be more oppressed than the other, we’re going to see more of this. I confess, as a spectator sport it’s quite entertaining.


Circle Jerk

To get things started, this:

Jamie Oliver has said he named his new product “punchy jerk rice” to show where he drew his culinary inspiration from.

Oliver’s rice mixes garlic, ginger and jalapenos “to create a jerk marinade with attitude”.

I know a lot of people like Oliver’s cheeky Essex-boy shtick and lord knows it’s made him rich, but boy I find it irritating. I’ve tried using his recipes before and they’re full of silly descriptions and flippant remarks, often in places where you need some clear direction. The informal, who-cares approach may have worked when he burst onto the scene as a young man with The Naked Chef, but now he’s 43 and so laid back he wants the government to tell everyone what they can and can’t feed their children, he sounds like someone who’s never grown up. And the problem with trying to be popular and down wiv the masses (even though his fan base is exclusively middle class) is he attracts the attention of idiots like Dawn Butler:

In a tweet the Shadow Equalities Minister wrote to Oliver: “I’m just wondering, do you know what Jamaican jerk actually is? It’s not just a word you put before stuff to sell products. Levi Roots should do a masterclass. Your jerk rice is not OK. This appropriation from Jamaica needs to stop.”

If Britain was a serious country and adults were in charge the pressing question on everyone’s minds would be how such a complete imbecile has attained elected office. Instead, everyone is running around contesting the absurdity which is “cultural appropriation”, as if logic and reason are answers to a child flinging shit. Butler should have been ignored or mocked into oblivion, but instead she’s generating headlines.

And this amuses me:

The chef and entrepreneur Levi Roots has described Jamie Oliver’s decision to launch a jerk rice dish as a mistake, as a row over cultural appropriation widened.

From what I remember, Levi Roots turned up on Dragon’s Den with a guitar and some of his grandmother’s homemade sauce. Pasty-white Englishman Peter Jones, who is good mates with the bloke in charge of purchasing for Sainsbury’s, agreed to back Roots for a hefty cut of the business. One phone call to his mate later and kerr-ching! Instant success. Now Roots has gone onto open some successful restaurants which is more than Jamie Oliver managed, and I don’t begrudge him his fame and fortune. But I don’t see how Roots getting Peter Jones to flog his grandma’s sauce into Sainsbury’s makes him an authority on Jamaican cooking, much less one who deems it appropriate to tell another chef what to do. Does he even have a chef’s qualification, as French chefs must in order to be taken seriously? No, he doesn’t.

So in summary, we have a politician telling an unqualified chef/guitarist to teach a former pastry chef, who may have made a pig’s ear of a dish, to give a masterclass on how to do it properly. Little wonder British cuisine is subject to global mockery; the problem is, with stories like this making front page news, the mockery is no longer restricted to the food.


Kofi Annan

From the BBC:

Kofi Annan, the only black African to become UN secretary-general, has died.

The 80-year-old “passed away peacefully on Saturday after a short illness”, the foundation named after him said.

He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001 for helping to revitalise the international body, during a period that coincided with the Iraq War and the HIV/Aids pandemic.

My abiding memory of Kofi Annan is his repeatedly appearing on my TV screen shaking his head sadly and saying he was “gravely concerned” about something or other, and that something or other continuing as if he didn’t exist. I always thought he was probably a decent guy, but hopelessly weak and easily manipulated. The Iraq War probably did more damage to the UN than any other event: firstly the weapons inspectors dillied, dallied and let themselves get pushed around for a decade; then two permanent members of the security council undermined the very sanctions they voted for by doing illegal business with Saddam Hussein; then two other permanent members decided to gather up a posse and attack Iraq under the auspices of Resolution 1441, telling a pack of lies in the process. Of the five permanent members and the UN itself, the only entity that came out looking good was China. And doesn’t that tell you everything? As the UN was rendered impotent by its senior members, Kofi Annan shook is head and said he was gravely concerned. Nobody cared.

This would not be so bad were this not the first time something awful happened on his watch, but as the BBC says:

However, Annan was not immune from criticism. His critics blamed him for the UN’s failure to halt the genocide in Rwanda in the 1990s when he was head of the organisation’s peacekeeping operations.

Kofi Annan was head of UN peacekeeping between 1992 and 1996. During that period we not only had the Rwandan genocide – which happened right under the UN’s nose – but also the Screbrenica massacre. I find it hard to blame the individual Dutch soldiers in blue helmets who stood by and let a few thousand Bosnians get murdered by Serbs, but the Dutch government was so ashamed they resigned en masse in 2002. Not Annan, however: despite having failed to prevent two of the worst acts of genocide in my lifetime he got promoted a short time afterwards to the top spot. I’d be interested to know what you have to do to miss out on promotion at the UN, let alone get fired.

Unfortunately, Kofi wasn’t the only Annan making headlines during his tenure either. His son Kojo was also in the papers for being neck-deep in Iraq’s oil-for-food scandal, which (again) occurred right under the nose of his father. As Mark Steyn said back in 2005 in an article that’s worth reading in full:

You’ll recall that Kofi Annan’s son Kojo – who had a $30,000-a-year job but managed to find a spare quarter-million dollars sitting around to invest in a Swiss football club – has been under investigation for some time for his alleged ties to the Oil-for-Food programme. But the investigators have now broadened their sights to include Kofi’s brother Kobina Annan, the Ghanaian ambassador to Morocco, who has ties to a businessman behind several of the entities involved in the scandal – one Michael Wilson, the son of the former Ghanaian ambassador to Switzerland and a childhood friend of young Kojo. Mr Wilson is currently being investigated for suspected bribery over a $50 million contract to renovate the Geneva offices of the UN World Intellectual Property Organisation.

The actual head of the Oil-for-Food racket, Kofi sidekick Benon Sevan, has resigned, having hitherto insisted that a mysterious six-figure sum in his bank account was a gift from his elderly aunt, a lady of modest means who lived in a two-room flat back in Cyprus. Paul Volcker’s investigators had planned to confirm with auntie her nephew’s version of events, but unfortunately she fell down an elevator shaft and died.

Most of the Ghanaian diplomatic corps and their progeny seem to have directorships at companies with UN contracts and/or Saddamite oil options. I had no idea being a Ghanaian ambassador’s son opened so many doors, and nor did they till Kofi ascended to his present eminence.

I got the impression the world gave Kofi Annan a pass on almost everything because, as an African, he was held to appallingly low standards. The same bigotry of low expectations which plagues prominent Africans everywhere was applied to Annan time and again, but reading the tributes pouring in it seems he’s been deified in the same manner as Nelson Mandela. For example:

Well, okay. But I remember him for being utterly ineffectual and presiding over a UN which proved itself to be both impotent and corrupt in equal measure, both of which got considerably worse when he was in charge – perhaps because he was in charge. This from the BBC sums up his career for me:

He later served as the UN special envoy for Syria, leading efforts to find a solution to the conflict.

He quit his post as UN envoy to Syria after only six months in the role, citing the failures of world powers to fulfil their commitments.

He did seem like a kind, decent person and I wish him to rest in peace, but he is undeserving of the professional platitudes being heaped on him.


Idris Elba as James Bond

I’m a little late, but this is worth commenting on:

Idris Elba has posted a cryptic tweet suggesting he could be the next James Bond.

Days after reports that a producer of the franchise is tipping him to be 007, he posted: “My name’s Elba, Idris Elba”.

Fans are taking it as a big hint that he could be about to take on the role when Daniel Craig leaves next year.

There’ve been rumours linking Idris to the Bond role since 2014, which he’s neither confirmed nor denied.

Taken in isolation, this isn’t too bad an idea. Idris Elba is a decent actor (although he has turned in some awful performances), and like Daniel Craig he has both physical presence and suavity. Personally I think the James Bond franchise should have been binned once and for all after the godawful Spectre, but if they’re going to insist on flogging this dead horse you might as well cast Elba as anyone else. Sure he’s probably too old and many will wonder how MI6 ended up recruiting a Baltimore drug dealer as their top agent, but neither of these should count against him. Again, taken in isolation, nor should his being black. A black James Bond might seem a little odd and out of whack with the books, but that ship sailed a long time ago. So in itself, and as a comment on Elba’s suitability for the role, I don’t have a problem.

However, any decision to cast a black actor as James Bond cannot be separated from the culture war which is raging around us. It would be nice if people could adopt the same attitude to Elba as rugby league fans did to Ellery Hanley when he became captain of Great Britain in 1988, or damned near everyone did when Daley Thompson cleaned up in 1984. I understand this era was pretty awful for black or mixed-race kids at school or on the street, but nobody in those days was trumpeting the achievements of a talented black person as being a victory over whitey. People cheered for Frank Bruno, Jason Robinson, Martin Offiah, Nigel Benn, and Chris Eubank as well as the numerous black performers and musicians in Britain’s cultural scene without resorting to zero-sum race war score-keeping. But we live in a different era, one where we’re told that a black person taking a nominally white position is hugely important in itself, a redressing of the balance currently tipped in favour of “white privilege”. And unfortunately, after a decade of poisonous identity politics, they are right: Idris Elba playing James Bond would be important in itself, and not in a good way.

Something the ZMan has pointed out is that minority groups are increasingly acting as though they’ve won the decisive battle in a war. Pulling down the symbols and statues of one’s enemy is the act of a conquering army, and that’s precisely what’s happening in the UK, US, and Canada. Meanwhile, within mere weeks of the Supreme Court ruling in his favour over his refusal to make a cake for a gay wedding, the Colorado baker is back in court after a transgender woman filed a discrimination suit against him. When someone decided to remake Ghostbusters in 2016 with an all-female cast, it was presented by culture warriors as a victory for feminism. When it tanked, misogyny was blamed. The forces behind identity politics spare no efforts in seeking opportunities to capture ground, celebrate a victory, and in it rub the noses of those they see as their enemies, i.e. ordinary white men and their families. Indeed, New Labour’s entire immigration strategy seems to have been created purely to spite the native British population by shoving “diversity” in their faces and calling anyone who complains a racist. Within minutes of the rumours of Elba playing Bond hitting social media it was full of SJW’s delighted by how much this would upset “racists”, by which they mean anyone getting a little fed up of identity politics being rammed down their throats twenty-four-seven. For instance:

There is plenty of this sentiment echoed on Twitter, and they might have a point if the only people who have mixed feelings about the idea are racists who don’t like blacks. But what I suspect is bothering many people is that Elba cast as Bond will deepen the wounds of the ongoing culture war. We’ll have endless Guardian articles telling us on the one hand that a black James Bond shows how wonderfully multi-cutural and diverse Britain is, while on the other it’s still steeped in racism and unable to move on from its colonial past. Anyone who objects to such extrapolations from a single casting will be denounced as racist and, probably, banned from Twitter – along with anyone who gives the actual film a less-than glowing review. And if there was not at least one article in a mainstream media outlet demanding a transgender James Bond, I’d be astounded.

As the Zman said, the SJWs and militant minorities believe they’ve won and are enjoying what they think are victory parades. In reality, the war has barely got started and all we’ve seen so far are small, opening battles which is shaping up to be a long and bloody campaign which can only have one winner. Given where we are now, compared to even five years ago, I’d hazard a guess a lot of people uncomfortable about Elba playing Bond are less concerned with the colour of his skin than how it will be used by sections of the left to further and deepen the ongoing culture war. It was not the racist right that created identity politics but the woke left; ordinary people have been fervently wishing this war would end but, with no prospect of that in sight, increasing numbers have decided enough is enough and started to push back. Unfortunately, this means fighting on the ground the left have chosen, and in this case it’s Idris Elba playing James Bond. It shouldn’t be a big deal, but sadly it is. It’s a shame because Elba seems like a good sort and I’m sure he didn’t ask for this, but as Trotsky didn’t quite say, culture war is interested in you.

I don’t think there’s anything to the rumours of Elba playing Bond – they’ve been circulating for years – but if the producers move ahead with it, they should prepare themselves for an shitstorm that may render the film unmarketable. It won’t be a question of right wingers objecting to Elba’s casting per se, but of its inevitable weaponisation by those who want to see them eradicated, or at least cowed into silence. Nobody batted an eyelid back in 2006 when Felix was played by a black man in Casino Royale, and I doubt a black Bond would have done much other than raise a few eyebrows and cause some muttering. Alas, that was a long time ago. We’re now neck-deep in a nasty, vicious culture war which is taking no prisoners, and until recently has been heavily one-sided. But now the other side is turning up, the rules are about to change. Depressingly, this probably means a black James Bond is a near impossibility – at least for a while.