The incongruous sight of Nick Clegg, a publicly professed atheist, belting out hymns at the Royal Wedding made one wonder whether he is a hypocrite, or was suffering some kind of flashback to better days, or had momentarily forgotten his lack of belief, or was treating the day like a better class of sing-song. Hypocrisy would, at least in my opinion, seem to be condign with the natural state of being a Liberal Democrat, particularly under that individual's leadership, which is why his poxed campaign to alter this country's voting system must be smashed at the ballot box later this week.
Its aim is to ensure that power is distributed more 'fairly'; that is, with him, and his party, one which is more open to the allegation that it has no constituency other than its own membership than even the BNP, receiving far greater shares of it than could ever be justified by the number of votes cast in their favour under our current system. Not even David Cameron exudes such an air of unjustified entitlement to power and status as Nick Clegg. He seems to have done nothing to justify the position he holds in public life. He seems to have committed no original thought to the public domain. All he seems to have done is to be who he is, and as far as I can see he seems to think we should be grateful to him for it. I have never seen a British politician who gives off such an air of thinking that they're part of some kind of international elite as Clegg. This is not a fantasy which he should be permitted to indulge; just as those with Napoleonic delusions usually end up in asylums, so, too, those who aspire to systems which are incompatible with those under which they were elected should be quietly sidelined, as traffic commissioners for Little Piddlebury On The Slide. There they can enjoy having a little power, and give the little people a bit of trouble by being thoroughly fractious members of the parish council. That is Clegg's natural level, one to which his electorate should consign him very soon; in my view, the sooner, the better.
The past year has given a very welcome insight into his character. The ruthlessness with which he has agreed to every cut in services which kicks the poor, the sick and the weak when they're down indicates to me that this man should not have more power than he has already, but significantly less. He leads a zombie party, neither quite living nor quite dead, a Frankenstein amalgam of two philosophies both of which are further past their sell by date than yesterday's socks. What he needs is the civic equivalent of an encounter with Burberry baseball-capped Buckfast swillers, shouting 'Get it right up ye!" at him while making obscene gestures in his direction. He really does seem to think that he was born to govern us. While Blair had the same contempt, at least he had the common touch, sometimes, once in a while. While completely lacking the common touch, and gaffes about bigoted women notwithstanding, I don't think Gordon Brown held the same contempt for the ordinary as Clegg seems to do. While Clegg's posture apes amity for one's fellow, in reality it is nothing but that very old, bog-standard liberal contempt for old things and old values you don't share, don't understand and won't try to find out about. I would be very surprised if he was not on precisely the same mental wavelength as HRH The Prince of Wales.