Dan Hannan, curate’s egg

Hannan….est-ce qu’il y a un cul-de-sac, peut etre?

What on earth made the Tory MEP send that tweet about Romney?

You may or may not be a Twitter user, but let me anyway relay back to you a ‘tweet’ made by the seemingly twitterbiquitous Dan Hannan this morning:

‘Americans! Are you really more interested in what Mitt Romney does with his money than in what Barack Obama does with yours?’

Now sometimes, I read what Dan has to say (mainly on the EU) and think that he is about as on the money as it’s possible to be. Mind you, as he hates the EU and Camerlot, I am often left wondering why he is a Tory MEP, but that’s a discussion for another day. However, in the case of this tweet, a simple deconstruction of it serves as an admirable example of why these days, I think almost all politicians are (a) unconsciously ethically bereft, and therefore (b) impossible to take seriously.

What Dan is suggesting is that Americans should be sensible, and vote for a tax-evading, asset-stripping, law-breaking believer in the prophecies of Joseph Smith, rather than a smug, empty lawmaker who looks acceptably negroid, has failed to deliver on most of his campaign promises, and – on the one he did deliver – proved himself, by and large, to be fiscally and economically illiterate.

Granted, this is not the sort of political plurality you’d want to push up there as a Premier League defence of the American Party system: but let’s be real about this….please? Romney has moved US jobs offshore, made a lot of money from unemploying folks, and refuses to discuss where his untaxed money is. As Obama doesn’t suffer from any of those sincerity challenges, he has to be the winner on this one. If, that is, you have a single moral, fair and open-minded synapse anywhere in your being. If that is, you are a member of a Party whose leader proclaims that any and all forms of tax avoidance (let alone evasion) are “morally repugnant”.

After his election in late 2008, I managed to alienate pretty well everyone on the liberal-left by asking, “Where’s the beef?” in relation to Obama. I am on the record (over two years ago) as saying I think Obama is a jerk. But what I have never suggested is the idea of replacing a jerk with a bloke about whom the jury requires more evidence as to whether he’s a tax crook or not. And as he refuses to give that evidence, we of the dastardly, sick, twisted and world-weary, incessantly cynical tendency are left to conclude that, um, yes, the chances are he is indeed a tax crook. My God, how do we people live with ourselves?

OK, foot off the ironic sarcasm pedal. I’m sure Daniel Hannan is a very nice man. But were I to offer any advice to his critics on the Left – and perish that thought, because they don’t engage with anything other than certainty repetition – it would be this: simply retweet everything Dan tweets, minus any use of the words ‘cock’, ‘twat’, ‘arsehole’, ‘Tory scum’, ‘pillock’ or indeed any other braindead insult you hope will serve as a wit replacement.

I offer that advice in vain on the basis of having spent thirty-one informative years as a communications strategist. I can tell you this, Hard-Lefties: nothing kills an all-promise-no-content product more quickly than good advertising. Think on it.

Finally, as to my prediction that Barack Obama is a one-term lame duck President…I fess up in a wriggle-free manner: I was wrong. I plead guilty to the assumption that the world’s largest soi-disant democracy would come up with a better opponent than Mitt f**king Romney.

See also The Saturday Essay: Why Germany will leave the eurozone…even if it doesn’t want to.

61 thoughts on “Dan Hannan, curate’s egg

  1. It makes no difference who wins this election, the Wall Street led kleptocracy rules America, whether via a well meaning but ultimately powerless Obama or directly under a vulture like Romney.


  2. There is nothing wrong, either criminally or morally, with tax avoidance-in other words keeping as low as possible the amount of our own money which the state wastes (usually on paying itself and its servants vast amounts of money for nothing-they haven’t yet got round to the chicks for free, but just wait, just wait.).
    It is tax which is the moral wrong-taking peoples money with menaces generally is. We usually put up with it because some of the money goes to doing some good-and most of us feel the trade-off is ok-ish. But more and more people now feel that they have paid in a lot and when they are due the pay-back (state pension, healthcare, etc.), they just aren’t going to get it. Furious?-not half, pop-pickers!
    So my objection to Romney is not the tax bit. I agree with you on the off-shoring bit (but thats the fashion of the moment-and Obama hasn’t exactly protected US jobs has he?).
    No, my objection is purely UK selfish. Romney is a loose cannon on foreign policy and is likely to start something nasty in the Middle East-and our fools will get us into it as well. Obama won’t.
    BTW, I thought your bit about the current Middle East situation very good and explains a lot which I couldn’t previously figure out. Don’t know if you’re right but it certainly had logic behind it.


  3. “the jury requires more evidence as to whether he’s a tax crook or not”

    What jury?
    Why don’t you send an extra 100 quid in tax payments to your taxman?

    It’s neither Obama nor Romney it is the stupid bank regulations stupid! http://bit.ly/S9qUid


  4. The person chosen to be President of the United States of America should be a figurehead to whom citizens of the individual states can look to for moral leadership and, in the event of military threat, can be relied upon to make the right decisions for the states.

    What neither office should be about is political and economic management of an entire continent.

    There are many in the United States who view the taking of more and more power to one individual (including his/her office) is unconstitutional. North America is constituted as ‘united states’ – the power given to the Federal government and to the President was supposed to be strictly limited. Yet over the last several decades, the White House has taken more and more power from the individual states; much of America is now ruled through ‘executive order’.

    Does any of this sound familiar? President Bliar bringing an executive order to a Town Hall near you, soon.

    The global and sovereign economic crisis should be a wake-up call to every individual person in the West: stop this power grab now and return decision making to much more local level. That means the individual states in America and the individual countries in Europe.

    The tiny minority of politically active power and money grabbers need to be curtailed urgently. And that includes Romney and Obama (and their entourage of bankers and financial backers. The world will be a better place with local democracy restored.


  5. I don’t read enough about Romney to know exactly what off shoring he did but this knee jerk reaction against it is completely misguided imo. Should Honda, Toyota, Jaguar (TATA), Sony,Boeing,MINI(BMW), Ford etc, etc endlessly, stop off shoring to us? Should we not be allowed those jobs? Sure with countries like China there is an issue because they do reciprocate by opening up their own economy but saving a company by moving some manufacturing to a different country is not necessarily wrong or immoral.


  6. “nothing kills an all-promise-no-content product more quickly than good advertising”
    It sure doesn’t stop ’em trying.


  7. JW
    I am beginning to think you have something against Mormons in
    general.If Romney had invented off shoring I could understand your
    rant.He didn’t.But he did have to compete against companies that did.
    Was he supposed to give up ?
    He was not evading taxes.Merely placing capital out of the reach of
    corrupt or Marxist politicians,litigation crazy Americans and their lawyers.
    As to belicosity.I doubt if anyone could be worse than the current
    occupant of the White House,Nobel peace prize winner that he is.
    Obummer will anything to retain power,including starting a war if the
    polls start going against him.
    The only thing going for Obummer is thatif re elected,the coming collapse
    will arrive sooner rather than later with Romney.


  8. Whats the difference between Romney outsourcing Labour and Robert allowing outsourced corn?
    One was a bad monopoly, the other good?


  9. Your first mistake was to think the US is a democracy: it is not, and was never planned as one; it is a representative republic.

    That said I doubt if Romney has done himself any favours picking Ryan as his veep candidate but it will make for a more lively and colourful campaign full of dirty tricks and mudslinging. But at the end of the day Obama should still slip through although it will tighten from today’s odds. On intrade Romney has a mere 39.7 percent chance of winning. that should get to 45-48 per cent at some time during the campaign at which a punter at today’s price should close the bet since it will go to zero on 5 November after Obongo wins.

    Obama has not disappointed me much, I knew he was a mere apprentice. I am only interested in foreign policy and there he has been gonorrhea to McCain’s syphillus. With Romney you get AIDS!


  10. winston Romney is rich. According to the slog view the Rich always exploit the poor, so he MUST have exploited the poor down trodden masses to gain wealth. For all I know Romney might be a complete tool and have stolen all his millions, but to those who believe in Marx he must have done so it’s not even worth looking into it. Of course that the other guy has become rich from being a career politician is somehow not as evil. I never could work that out but then I can never understand how seemingly intelligent people can still come out with Marxist tags in the 21st century and expect to be taken seriously. For my money they’re all typical political scum and the only real difference will be a bigger deficit under Obama than under Romney because he will have to watch his back from the tea party. So Romney will probably be marginally better


  11. The companies you mention either bought existing plant or built new ones in order to have a bridgehead within the EU. this is not offshoring from elsewhere as jobs were either created anew or at least not lost here.


  12. Soap and Winston
    I give up. If you want unethical arseholes, and idiot MEPs who promote them, then go for it.
    But this really isn’t the site for you.


  13. Dear All
    There are evenings when I wonder what % of comment threaders here are on the same side as me.
    This has been one of them.


  14. Tax should be renamed Civilisation Levy. Those who do not wish to contribute are welcome to offshore themselves to a place where there is no gubbermint to steal all your money – it’s called Somalia.

    And before the childlike absolutists flame me as some kind of mad commie, I recognise that government is capable of pissing loads of cash down the drain and equally effective at funnelling public funds into private hands. The solution is not to abandon the payment of tax and our civilisation with it – it is to quit whining on the internet and be a bit more politically active than simply putting an ‘x’ in a box every five years.


  15. MarkyMark……….if local control is the answer how do you explain the financial condition of the cities of California and the entire state budget for that matter?

    We the people are the problem not our Governments.


  16. Ron Paul is NOT going to win the presidential election in the US. I sincerely wish he did. But he’s not going to. Unless on of two things occurs:
    1) There’s a great awakening among the US electorate.
    2) The powers that be suddenly deem it to be in their interests for Ron Paul to become President Paul.

    You don’t have to like that fact. Just accept it.


  17. Well Bill, don’t bigger wars cause the deficit to rise? So Romney = bigger wars and consequently bigger deficits, so……..in the words of Monty Brewster: “None of the above”.


  18. “Civilisation Levy”-sorry sounds like “Climate Change Levy”. Nice phrase to disguise the true meaning-relieve the people of their money. Under our system, it is, of course those with least income who pay most tax, which doesn’t seem very civilised to me. And no it won’t be cured by taxing “the rich” more-it can only be cured by taxing everyone less, and the state spending less.


  19. Agreed Superfeck …..last go round I picked some obscure party and voted for their candidate. I will do the same this time.


  20. The marginal difference in respect of the wars and the deficits under either being what – 5% either way?

    The one to watch is Hilary. She looks more like Eva Peron as each day passes.


  21. Seconded. A sensible. rational AND pragmatic comment.

    However, although as you say, it’s a debate for another day, I have to say regarding “…he hates the EU and Camerlot, I am often left wondering why he is a Tory MEP…”, being a Tory is no reason to hate Camerlot and despise the EU.

    I consider myself closer to being a Tory than to the other parties, but Camerlot ain’t Tory, as sure as eggs is eggs.


  22. Correction. I should have said of course, “is no reason not to hate Camerlot and despise the EU.”

    Washed my fingers a little while ago, and can’t do anything with them…


  23. In other words, it’s not the principle that’s wrong, but it’s execution.

    That puts you broadly in agreement with DE…


  24. Hannan is an idiot and has been for a while. He is to gutless to renounce the Tories and switch to UKIP and to addicted to the EU money to actually show any principle and walk away from it.

    On the other side of the coin he is a ‘useful idiot’ for the more modern conservatives in that they can hold him up to the shire tories as ‘proof’ that their eurosceptic right wing is alive and kicking when in fact it’s more zombified than the banks.

    You will observe that Dan The Man is not a Westminster MP – where he would actually be a thorn in Cameron’s side, but istead is booted to the continent where he is an irrelevance. A voluble irrelvance but still an irrelevance.


  25. Bottom line is that unless you are willing to throw petrol bombs at the Police the government will ignore you because your opinion is pointless. Unless you are an actual physical threat to their status quo then you pose no threat.

    Marching achieves virtually nothing – look at the Stop The War march


  26. Look now- these Americans are an insular bunch- they have no idea what is going on on in their nextdoor counties/ states let alone the rest of the world.
    Take what they say with a pinch of salt.
    Rich senators , like any rich whatsit assume they have power and the wits to rule the world

    Wrong- my old da used to say they were only fit for vivtualling the world- simple as that!
    Why, because they take care of their own abroad , and their food supplies keep on flowing .

    Why on earth should one get hot and bothered about them? Europe is more our concern, isn’t it?


  27. Perhaps the issue is not that the rich keep horses, but that they then use them as a vehicle for further avoiding paying their fair share of tax.


  28. Two sides of the same coin. Regardless who “wins” in November, the USA has been angling for a serious war for a long time and they will not be denied.


  29. So neither is the perfect candidate ….but whats new, its only democracy.
    I’m remaining optimistic that there will have some sort of learning curve following the George Bush disaster….


  30. TJGM,

    Who are these ‘very reliable sources’? until then I presume you are just a ‘story teller’ for the Republicans.

    Surely you and your ‘very reliable source’ could verify your claims with a FOIR and why have the Republicans not come out with this story in the last 5 years?
    It surely not because they ‘would not want to show Obama in a bad light’ as they never ever indulge in negative ads/pr?

    PS Powerful article on Nakedcapitalism re P Ryan by M Ames on Ryan’s love for Ayn Rand (famous serial killer groupie)


  31. If you don’t understand the fact that Obama sealed access to his student records and that no FOIR can unseal them you are just thick!


  32. TJGM,

    First I am reminded of that adage ‘it takes one to know one’ and as to the quality of my ‘thickness’ I will leave that to the eye of the beholder.

    Apologies if I made you read an incorrect statement and thus you wasting 2 or so seconds of your life to non-productive endeavour, and thanks for correcting me.

    However, that your ‘breaking new story’ based on events that occurred over 20 years ago and have not been exposed by the MSM to-date (correct me again, if I am wrong), except for your ‘very reliable source’, who told you, leaves me totally underwhelmed.

    Are you saying ‘only people with stellar attainment at university should be President of the USA’?

    If you do, again I did not realise the ‘American Dream’ came with this proviso.

    Have a nice day


  33. “We the people are the problem, not our governments”.
    President Kennedy said that the “Buck stopped with him”.
    So in your view, it now stops with us? When did that happen? Why wasn’t I told? Do our PTB now say it’s all our fault? If that is the case then we certainly don’t need them, do we?


  34. DE, who gets to decide what’s a fair share of tax? You? If tax was fair there may be a whole heap of more people willing to pay it. I personally feel ripped off in Britain and that feeling is only exacerbated by the unholy tax waste I have to part subsidise.


  35. @BC you missed the only sensible alternative when faced with an impossible choice, don’t choose. I.e. don’t vote. A vote for a candidate in a corrupt system is a vote for a corrupt system.


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