Brendan O’Neill is broken-hearted over Clarkson

Yet again Brendan O’Neill says something more disgusting than I would have thought possible. Yet again!!

I’m gutted to hear that the BBC has given Clarkson the big heave-ho over his fracas with that producer who didn’t have his dinner ready on time.

Why? Because it’s further evidence of the Beeb’s self-emasculation, its sheepish, apologetic jettisoning of anything that might rile right-thinking viewers or make Hampstead-dwelling licence fee-payers choke on their Ovaltine.


Clarkson punched his underling in the face. He split his lip. He assaulted him. In what universe does that have anything to do with “right-thinking” or Hampstead? Since when is it “politically correct” to have rules that bosses aren’t allowed to punch their underlings? What the hell is this, Henry 8’s court after nine straight hours of boozing? How is it in any way “sheepish” for the BBC to fire Clarkson for punching an employee? Is the BBC supposed to allow its stars to punch employees? How is this decision the BBC “emasculating” itself? Is that what “masculine” means to Brendan O’Neill – top people being allowed to punch their subordinates in the face with impunity?

Notice also that he too calls it a “fracas.” What bullshit. Call it what it is, not something nicer because you approve of it.

With the elbowing aside of JC, we are witnessing not simply the sacking of an employee over a scuffle, but the willingness of a scandal-stung, crisis-ridden BBC to ditch anything that has the whiff of controversy and to bend its knee to the bland, larks-free worldview of the right-on.

“Controversy”? “Larks”? What is the matter with him? What will he write next – “Hooray for Bullying, Bullying is Fun”? And again, why is he making it about political correctness? Is it only liberals who think the workplace should not be a boxing ring?

In the oceans of ink that have been spilt over Clarksongate, or Punchgate, or whatever gate this is, the least convincing commentary has been that which tries to convince us this is just a workplace disciplinary matter.

Just as you or I would be sacked if we walloped a co-worker, especially someone below us in the pecking order, so Clarkson deserves the boot too, says his army of haters in the media and on Twitter.


Please, Telegraph, stop paying this loathsome man to write this shit.

And now, cravenly, like a hostage reading from a script written by his captors, the BBC has capitulated and got rid of one of the jewels in its crown, the man who made it millions of pounds and won it millions of viewers around the world.

What gobsmacking idiocy. The BBC had already, in recent years, offered up its cojones for a public kicking, becoming an increasingly wimpish, risk-dodging sorry excuse for a public broadcaster.

He forgot to say the BBC is pussy-whipped. What are you if you offer up your cojones? Pussy-whipped, definitely.

Well done, liberal elite. You’ve won. You’ve made the Beeb as bland as you are.

I won’t miss Clarkson on Top Gear, because I didn’t watch him on it. But millions and millions of people, here and abroad, will miss him. And all of us, Clarkson fans or not, should be worried that the BBC has finally been completely colonised by the dead, dogmatic, fun-free outlook of a minuscule, if hugely influential, section of British society.

It’s a bullies’ charter. He gets more loathsome every time I read him. Next week I suppose he’ll be giving advice on how to burn children with cigarettes when no one is looking.


  1. says

    Next week I suppose he’ll be giving advice on how to burn children with cigarettes when no one is looking.

    Honestly, it makes me wonder about the childhoods of the people who so readily identify with the perpetrators of abuse and violence, considering such acts justified (or at least defensible) and the victims deserving. Of course, the problem goes well beyond individual families, but it seems impossible in the absence of widespread and culturally condoned abuse of children that so many people could respond to these acts and statements with anything other than horror.

  2. Morgan says

    Just as you or I would be sacked if we walloped a co-worker, especially someone below us in the pecking order, so Clarkson deserves the boot too, says his army of haters in the media and on Twitter.
    Please. If this were a simple punishment-for-physicality issue, why has so much of the Clarkson-baiting commentary obsessed over what Clarkson thinks and says?

    a) Because the only reason anyone’s arguing Clarkson shouldn’t be fired is because they like what he thinks and says, or enjoy that others don’t.
    b) Because “he should have been sacked long ago for being a vile shit, and his employers’ and fans’ reluctance to call him on his bad behaviour is the reason it reached the point where he assaulted a subordinate” is a very obvious yet worthwhile point to make.
    c) Even if those calling for his sacking have the most impure of motives, the point in the first paragraph quoted is still completely valid and sufficient.

    O’Neill is essentially arguing that Clarkson should have total immunity from any consequences for anything he does, because he annoys people O’Neill dislikes. It’s the BBC’s duty to feed him as many coworkers as he wants to assault, to keep the liberal-tweaking going, it seems.

  3. Morgan says

    Oh, and:

    The dogmatic liberal elite have finally kicked out Jeremy Clarkson. I hope they’re happy

    Yup! I mean, why the hell wouldn’t we be? Not happy that it took someone getting a torrent of abuse and a split lip, sure, but “I hope you’re happy” kind of assumes there’s some obvious reason to dislike getting what you’ve called for.

  4. says

    Enzyme – ewwwwwww.

    What is this? I know some of the more fanatical Christians in the US are pro-bullying because it discourages Teh Gayz, but I haven’t seen it in secular right-wingers. They ignore it, but they don’t celebrate it, that I’m aware of. Is “hooray for bullying” part of Lad Culture?

  5. says

    I am totally gob-smacked (ha!) by the reaction. A load of the people who are complaining are the same who go on about progressives being soft on crime and being full of po-mo interpretations of good sound commonsense. I thought it was an elementary rule that you don’t punch your co-workers – so elementary it is not written down in anyone’s contract, like not keeping a pet snake in your desk drawer.

    When O’Neill was accusing women of being delicate little flowers for objecting to be harassed in the streets, my imaginary army of males followed him about shouting, “Nice arse, like one up it” at him to see if that would enrich his thinking. I now want the same army to be deployed at every work-place of the complainers and punch them in the mouth, to see if they will find this is something that the bosses should turn a blind eye to, a mere chuckle by the coffee machine.

  6. says

    Ophelia – I don’t think it’s a ipart of it, but it is something from which lad culture isn’t in any rush to distance itself.

    I wouldn’t place the Institute of (Bad) Ideas as being part of lad culture, though it’s sometimes a bit of a cheerleader. No: it’s a whole lot weirder than that. I have no idea how I’d conceptualise them.

  7. sambarge says

    I won’t miss Clarkson on Top Gear, because I didn’t watch him on it.

    I love that line. Basically, he’s just written a massive screed on why Clarkson should stay on the air but ends it with the assurance that he himself is far too cultured or intelligent to actually watch Top Gear. Let’s take this opportunity to swipe at the supposedly emasculated, weak liberal elite but let’s also make sure everyone knows that you wouldn’t personally lower yourself to watch that show yourself. The important think is that O’Neill can feel superior to both groups.

    Do you know who isn’t calling for Clarkson to get his job back? Clarkson. Jeremy Clarkson has never been shy about letting people know that they could f*ck off if they didn’t like what he said or did. He has never seriously apologized or hidden from his words or actions before. But I don’t see him on the news claiming that he should be let back on the air now. Do you? He reported the incident, attempted to apologize and took his discipline accordingly.

    I can’t imagine how devoid of sense and human decency you have to be to be out-done in those areas by Jeremy Clarkson.


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