RICHARD LITTLEJOHN: Why have our MPs investigating Love Island?

RICHARD LITTLEJOHN: Why have our MPs gone berserk and started investigating Love Island?

When I am at my desk, I usually have Radio 2 playing on the stereo and Sky News on the TV, with the sound turned off, just in case something newsworthy happens.

So imagine my excitement when I looked up from the wordface to see the bright yellow banner running along the bottom of the screen screaming at me:

‘Breaking news from Downing Street . . .’

Unfortunately, the Breaking News from Downing Street did not relate to the long-overdue resignation of Theresa May, rather an investigation into Love Island

Theresa May, pictured, has failed Brexit, destroyed the Tory Party and alienated our closest ally over the Chinese telecom deal 

This is it, I thought. The Big One. The last surprise announcement from No 10 was back in 2017, when Mother Theresa wrong-footed everyone by calling a snap General Election.

Surely this was the newsflash we’d all been waiting for — Mrs May has finally bowed to reality and is resigning with immediate effect. 

Hallelujah! Trebles all round!

I muted Radio 2 and pumped up the volume on Sky, eagerly awaiting the historic bulletin.

‘The Prime Minister’s spokesman . . .’

Yes, yes, get on with it.

‘. . . has said that the death of a guest on the Jeremy Kyle Show is deeply disturbing.’


She has also breathed new life into Nigel Farage, pictured here eating some fruit cake 

‘Broadcasters and production companies have a responsibility for the mental health and well-being of participants and viewers of their programmes. We are clear they must have appropriate levels of support in place.’

I’m sorry, I’ll just read that again. In the middle of the greatest national crisis since Suez, the Prime Minister interrupted Ken Bruce’s PopMaster quiz to make an official comment about a daytime television programme?

Why? It’s not as if she hasn’t got anything better to do, what with failing miserably to implement Brexit; destroying the Tory Party; and alienating our closest allies over a cheap-as-chips Chinese telecoms deal, which threatens our national security.

Not to mention breathing new life into Nigel Farage and making Marxoid throwback O.J. Corbyn odds-on favourite to form the next government. You might have thought that would be enough to be going on with, without bothering to put in her three-penn’orth over a trash TV freak show.

But no. Like all other politicians, May is desperate to pretend that she shares the concerns of ‘ordinary people’. So the Downing Street propaganda machine is marshalled to issue a formal statement designed to demonstrate just how much she cares.

Oh, and don’t forget to chuck in a few platitudes about ‘mental health’, ‘well-being’ and ‘appropriate levels of support’. This is Mental Health Awareness Week, after all.

Marxoid throwback O.J. Corbyn odds-on favourite to form the next government

Frankly, I doubt whether May knows the difference between Jeremy Kyle and Jeremy Vine. Politicians think TV is for appearing on, not watching.

I’ve never seen the Kyle show — and I work from home. So I wouldn’t have thought May has, either. Nor have many of her fellow MPs, if truth be told. But that hasn’t stopped them wading into the controversy, parading their faux compassion and calling for Kyle’s head on a spike.

And now they’ve got the taste, they’re like a dog with a juicy bone. They’ve gone completely berserk and set up a full Parliamentary inquiry into so-called ‘reality’ TV.

Damian Collins, chairman of the Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee — the ‘Ministry of Free Tickets’ — said despite the fact that ITV had dropped Kyle’s show like a radioactive potato, that ‘should not be the end of the matter’.

Yes, it should.

Still, there’s no accounting for MPs’ insatiable thirst for cheap publicity and appetite for displacement activity.

They may not be able to do anything about the real problems facing the country, but that won’t stop them posturing as our moral guardians.

They refuse shamefully to take responsibility for carrying out the clear instructions of the 17.4 million people who voted Leave in the EU referendum.

They clearly haven’t learned the lessons of the expenses scandal and continue cynically to fill their boots at taxpayers’ expense.

They pretend to stage ‘meaningful votes’ on Europe, while failing conspicuously to pass a single meaningful piece of legislation on anything else.

But, hey, they are going to leave no stone unturned in their quest to investigate Love Island on ITV2. You couldn’t make it up.

Actually, you probably could, given their track record. MPs love rubbing shoulders with celebrity, even the Z-listers who clutter up the little-watched daytime and fringe channel schedules.

And just look at the way they fawned over the repulsive Russell Brand, when they invited him to Westminster to share his learned opinions on the legalisation of drugs.

Labour PM Harold Wilson started it all when he gave gongs to The Beatles in the hope some of their stardust would rub off on him.

But things really began to get worse under Tony Blair. He even intervened in a Coronation Street storyline, joining the fictional Free The Weatherfield One campaign, after the character Deirdre Rachid was jailed for credit card fraud. At least Jeremy Kyle is a real person.

Not satisfied with inserting himself into one of the nation’s favourite soap operas, Blair also issued a tearful statement of official condolence when Frank Sinatra died.

He was the People’s Crooner.

So perhaps we shouldn’t have been surprised when that other Jeremy (Corbyn) used Prime Minister’s Questions to pay tribute to Doris Day, who died this week.

Talk about a Dead Wood Stage. This week’s PMQs was a theatre of the Living Dead, as our zombie Parliament stumbles towards its inevitable extinction, with the stench of decay seeping from every pore.

Incidentally, as I write this, Sky News is excitedly promoting another nugget of ‘breaking news’. Apparently, Boris Johnson has confirmed that ‘of course’ he will stand in any forthcoming contest to choose a new Tory leader and Prime Minister.

And — this just in! — after a ‘frank exchange’ with the backbench 1922 Committee, Mother Theresa has refused yet again to name a resignation date and still intends to bring her dismal, defeatist ‘deal’ back to the Commons for a fourth time.

How long before MPs launch a Parliamentary inquiry into what bears do in the woods?

Police have issued a £90 fine to a man who tried to cover his face to hide his identity. When he learned that officers were testing facial recognition equipment, the pedestrian pulled down his cap and pulled up his jumper to conceal his mouth and nose.

As he walked past the cops, they stopped him and then, when he complained, threatened to arrest him, and issued the fine for ‘disorderly behaviour’.

Police say they need the technology to spot known criminals and terrorists.

But if you give them the power, they will always, always abuse it. This incident, in Romford, Essex, was caught on film by a BBC camera crew.

Yes, the police have a duty to keep us safe. But our surveillance society is already the most intrusive in the so-called ‘free’ world.

San Francisco this week became the first city in the U.S. to ban the use of facial recognition technology. Others are expected to follow suit.

What bothers me, apart from the principle of indiscriminate state snooping on innocent individuals, is who will be targeted. Can you imagine the Met setting up cameras at Marble Arch and threatening to arrest any woman in a burka who refuses to lift her face veil?

And during the recent ‘climate emergency’ demos in London, protesters were allowed to wear masks and, when they refused even to give their names after being arrested, were simply let off by the courts. We’re in danger of ending up with one law for masked middle-class eco-mentalists — and another for white, working-class men from Romford.

And on next… The Only Way is Ethics 

You can’t turn on the news these days without having to suffer a lecture about the impending ‘climate emergency’. But even this is not enough for some people. They want TV dramas to be forced to include storylines designed to ‘raise awareness’ of climate change and ‘promote positive environmental behaviours’.

Soon there’ll be no escape from green propaganda. Bafta, best known for handing out awards to luvvies, has even appointed a Head of Industry Sustainability, whatever that is.

Bafta’s Aaron Matthews said: ‘We cannot rely solely on current affairs and natural history programmes, we must look for other ways to bring sustainability messages to our screens that are both optimistic and inspirational.’

Coming soon: Emmerdale’s farmland is covered in windmills and solar panels; Albert Square is dug up and given over to growing vegetables; thousands of patients are admitted to Holby City suffering from skin cancer, caused by the hole in the ozone layer; Coronation Street becomes a dedicated cycle lane; and Broadchurch is wiped out by a tsunami. The heart sinks.


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