“Call these people scum but not those people...” The Mail on Sunday’s Dan Hodges puts the ‘idiot’ into ‘useful idiot’

Scumgate has highlighted this once again

Such is the addled nature of British media culture that in order to be considered left-wing you can simply assert that you are and the spend every character of every column you ever pen espousing right-wing talking points that would’ve caused Herman Goering to put down his roasted swan and splutter, “That’s a bit much!” sending feathers flying everywhere.

Dan Hodges — son of Oscar winner and former Labour MP, Glenda Jackson — has been safely ensconced at the Mail on Sunday for years, after a similarly lengthy stretch at The Telegraph, having previously been his mother’s parliamentary researcher and a PR for a series of organisations. I’ve covered his career in previous newsletters, but the key point to take from that previous discussion is this 👇🏻

Despite caping for the Conservative Party, relentlessly defending the Tories, and presenting red meat for right-wingers in his every column, Dan Hodges is still often allowed to present himself as “of the left” as if left-wing politics is homoeopathy and his mother’s political career is an endless bottle of Rescue Remedy.

Hodges’ status as Chief Idiot among the Mail’s corp of useful idiots was illustrated yesterday as he waded two-footed into ‘scumgate’, the continuing pants pissing by Conservative MPs after Angela Rayner’s called tiny Tory prefect Christopher Clarkson “scum” as he spoke against more support for Greater Manchester.

Since that incident on Wednesday, the Tories have been cranking up their outrage machine and suggesting that the single comment has led to a wave of abuse, rather than the public anger coming as a result of their decision to vote against feeding hungry children.

Enter Dan Hodges…

Just as there is “always a tweet” when Donald Trump says something i.e. an old tweet that illustrates his hypocrisy or volte-face, there is always a tweet when Dan Hodges microwaves a new lukewarm take:

It seems that 2015 Dan Hodges and 2020 Dan Hodges would not get on. But then Hodges can spin on a dime and disagree with what versions of himself from a month or even a week ago were saying. He is a living paradox.

And when it comes to violent rhetoric…

Hodges’ job at The Mail on Sunday is to always find a way to justify anything the government does while chivvying at Labour politicians incessantly, like a dog with a Kong full of peanut butter. He is also obsessed with and has a conspiracy theorist’s commitment to pinning anything he doesn’t like on The Hard Left.

That the Left of the Labour Party, let alone the Left generally, does not have access to the levers of power in Westminster doesn’t matter. For Hodges’ fevered worldview, it’s vital that — using words his paper has thrown around frequently in the last few years — “traitors” and “saboteurs” are undermining the government, which explains its failings instead of them flowing from its own corruption, incompetence and ideology.

Dan Hodges will not be happy until he is, like fellow Labour wreckers John Mann and Ian Austin, elevated to the House of Lords where bloviating, lying and talking out of his hoop will be celebrated in the way he believes it should be.

I’m sure if Dan reads this he’ll bluster something about how he’d abolish the House of Lords if he could. Well, tell that to Lord Prescott.

But before he is rewarded for his loyalty to the Conservative Party, Dan Hodges will need to put in a lot more spadework, digging a hole for the Left and digging Boris Johnson, Michael Gove — husband of his colleague Sarah Vine — and the rest of the governing ghouls out of the mud. Just look at the political analysis on show here… 👇🏻

Hodges points to a big pile of money being shovelled into the government’s coronavirus response and doesn’t bother his arse to think too much about where that money is going and who it is going to.

Simply spending huge amounts of government money is not an indication that the Conservative Party is working hard to protect the people of the United Kingdom. Instead, it has spent £210 billion with a huge proportion of that money going to companies that were pulled off the shelf simply to exploit the crisis. Here’s just one example: £50 million spent on masks that did not work.

Kate Green, the Shadow Secretary of State for Education and Labour MP for Stretford & Urmston explained the grift eloquently in Parliament this week:

While the provision of free school meals is being closed, the gravy train is still open for business—with £7,000 a day for consultants working on a test and trace system that does not work, £130 million to a Conservative party donor for unsafe covid testing kits, £160 million of profits for Serco and an increased dividend for its shareholders, because the Government threw good money after bad on a test and trace contract that is robbing the public. Yesterday, a Business Minister said that extending free school meals was not as simple as writing a cheque, but why is it that the money only runs out when it is hungry children who need it?

The £50 million spent on worthless masks — just one contract in the bonfire of insanities — would pay for free school meals for all children that need it for two weeks. But the government, for ideological reasons, does not want to do that. Standing in front of their bin fire and suggesting it’s perfectly fine? Dan Hodges.

Do I think Dan Hodges is actually stupid? No. But he’s paid handsomely to be stupid on Twitter all week and to condense that stupidity in the Mail on Sunday every weekend. Useful idiots can always find work.