Lunch with Richard Littlejohn is not for the fainthearted, not if it is to be one of those involving what Britain's highest-paid newspaper columnist calls "a good drink". Stamina is needed if one is to be Littlejohn's companion during such a lazy afternoon, but the experience is rewarding. He tends to talk like he writes – pugnaciously, often hilariously, while pouring vitriol on the control freaks he believes have damaged Britain. That means, mostly, the political Left. Richard Littlejohn is the scourge of the Left and as such has been branded a right-wing zealot comparable with, say, TV and radio commentator Rush Limbaugh ("Enraging liberals is simply one of the more enjoyable side effects of my wisdom.") in the United States. It is a categorisation Littlejohn vigorously rejects, at some considerable length.
As Tony Blair prepares to leave the stage he should finally have come to terms with unpopularity. The change has been gradual but cumulatively massive. I remember at the time of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales thinking what a ghastly phoney Blair is. There he stood reciting lines written for him by his republican side-kick Alastair Campbell about Diana as the "People's Princess". This is the same Campbell who only a few years earlier had heaped abuse on Diana via the pages of the Mirror and Today newspapers. Surely, I thought, the sensible British people will spot how ghastly Blair is? Er no, his popularity soared.
Richard Littlejohn is the patron saint of all good citizens and taxpayers who are against absolutely anybody trying to tell them what to do. Such is his libertarian position: "If I choose to eat four rashers of bacon and three eggs for breakfast, that's my heart attack." Looking back at the health and safety regulations of the past few years, he practically has steam coming out of his ears as he relates how playground games such as conkers and hopscotch have been outlawed. Dance floors are now carpeted for fear pensioners will slip, bell ringers have to wear earmuffs and if old ladies want to buy knitting needles they have to show proof-of-age. Nobody can purchase furniture polish without first satisfying supermarket managers they are not solvent abusers.
Copyright © 2011 Richard Littlejohn. All rights reserved.