Fresh from trying to manufacture a grassroots movement aping the pro-Corbyn Momentum with ‘Moggmentum’, the Tories have decided to, er, manufacture a grassroots event, with what has been dubbed the ‘Tory Glastonbury’.
Conservative MP George Freeman has decided to set up a ‘Conservative Ideas Festival”, saying,
Why is it just the left who have all the fun in politics?”
In spite of mainstream and social media dubbing the event – tongue so far in cheek it’s almost a piercing – ‘Tory Glastonbury’, Mr Freeman considers his event to be a
cross between Hay-on-Wye and the Latitude festival.
Of course, it’s highly likely that Freeman was just scrabbling for any comparison that didn’t include “We want to be like Jez at Glasto” (or whatever the Tory equivalent words would be), but his alternatives were not much more appropriate.
Glastonbury is attended by around 175,000 people, Latitude by tens of thousands. Hay on Wye sees a quarter of a million visitors or more. Each of these events sees attendees from all over the country and around the world.
George Freeman plans
an invitation-only audience of 150-200.
Yes, you read that right – 150-200 people will attend the Tory Glastonbury. By invitation only – can’t have any riff-raff turning up to our ‘mass event’ to ‘have all the fun’.
And so huge and complex will this event be that it will require a team of as many as twenty people – including no fewer than 10 Tory MPs – to set it up. Twenty! Mind-boggling.
You can’t buy authenticity. You can’t manufacture a movement. You can’t claim to be Glastonbury/Hay/Latitude with 150-200 people – even if you are planning to spend over £25,000.
Tories have learned nothing – in spite of it being right under their noses.
Fortunately, as so often, Twitter has saved the day by turning what would be merely excruciatingly embarrassing on its own into a celebration of Tory detachment from the real world. Here are a few of the best:
First on stage at #ToryGlastonbury will be Gary Barlow covering The Beatles Taxman. Then Samantha Cameron will recite some Boris Johnson.
— Rachael Swindon (@Rachael_Swindon) August 5, 2017
— MrMarauder (@Mr_Marauder) August 5, 2017
— The Agitator (@UKDemockery) August 5, 2017
— Health Campaigns Together (@nhscampaigns) August 5, 2017
— PeskyOldPleb 🌹🇵🇸 #GTTO (@PeskyOldGit) August 5, 2017
Just in case you’ve forgotten, this is what the Tories set out to mimic:
But why should the left have all the fun?
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