The Hunts In Charge

If you were wondering where I was going to call him a cunt, it's in this alt text.

Yeah. We're all as surprised as you are, mate.

I like to think I have a sturdy constitution, but every man has his limits. I discovered mine today as I was reading a seemingly innocuous story on the Guardian website. As I scrolled through the webpage in question, I felt myself overcome by the onset of feverish hot flushes. A bilious discharge slowly bubbled from my stomach to the back of my mouth. Stepping away from the computer to splash cold water in my face, I caught my reflection in the bathroom mirror. I was not gazing upon the face of the healthy young man I had thought myself to be. My eyes were bloodshot and my face was gaunt and haggard, as if small chunks of my soul had been chipped from my brain and extracted forcibly through my sinuses.

As I lay shivering in the foetal position on my bed, bucket close at hand, I pondered on what exactly it had been about Jeremy Hunt which had set me off on my morbid psychosomatic voyage. My eventual realisation was that because there is so much wrong with Jeremy Hunt - his unapologetically corrupt conduct, his outspoken hatred for our sacred institutions, his farcical ignorance on matters of unanimous scientific consensus - it would be impossible to isolate a single cause of my adverse reaction. What is clear is that despite his recent promotion to health secretary, Jeremy Hunt is definitely bad for my health.

Were I to seek Jeremy Hunt's advice on my maelstrom of maladies, he might recommend homeopathic drugs, which he believes to be an effective treatment for symptoms like my Hunt-induced mania. Now, much ink has been spilled on this subject and I don't intend to add to it. In fact it would probably have been more effective for homeopathy's detractors to spill a single molecule of ink and dilute it in millions of gallons of water to properly get their point across. Homeopathy is a crock of shit which does nothing useful, much like Jeremy Hunt himself. That is all we should need to say on the matter.

But there is something far more malevolent lying behind Jeremy Hunt's cavalier ignorance towards tricky concepts like "evidence" and "reason". If these are the opinions he's decided to espouse in public, what exactly is he keeping to himself? Does he believe that unicorns exist? Does he believe that unicorns are wicked, brutish creatures who hate our way of life and would gore us all with their magical horns if given half a chance? Does he want to a pre-emptively cull all horses, on the off-chance that unicorn sleeper cells are secretly embedded in our horse communities? In a nutshell: is Jeremy Hunt in favour of horse genocide? For all we know, the answer is yes.

It would be one thing if Jeremy Hunt were a chirpy nutcase taxi driver, jabbering his nonsense to anyone unfortunate enough to flag him down. Annoying, but harmless. Yet apparently that same taxi driver, when gifted a middle-class upbringing and an Oxbridge degree, is qualified to run the NHS. And that, I believe, is the root cause of my sickness. This isn't the first time I've had the symptoms, but it must be that Jeremy Hunt is a more virulent strain of the disease. He's not even qualified to be near a medicine cabinet. For him to be in the actual cabinet, fingers on the controls of a wrecking ball bearing down on our beloved health service, seems like some sort of cruel joke - a badly written episode of The Thick Of It.

One symptom I don't suffer from when contemplating Jeremy Hunt is amnesia, but strangely this seems to affect almost everyone else, and not just on the pressing issue of Jeremy Hunt. Less than six months ago, the then culture secretary was drowning in a sea of pretty damning allegations of corruption regarding his oversight of the News Corp takeover of BSkyB. Fortunately for him he had a swimming aid in the form of an actual aide, pushed down below the waves to drown as his master gasped for air. Plenty of evidence suggested foul play, but Jeremy Hunt has never shown a particular interest in evidence. And so he perseveres. OJ Simpson may have been acquitted for the murder of Nicole Brown, but he probably wouldn't have had much luck getting work as a police officer after that debacle. Yet Jeremy Hunt, a man of questionable character, is allowed to run rampant through the corridors of power, soon to kill again.

The illness is spreading fast, but the cure - evidence-based policy overseen by politicians who know what they are talking about - is decades away. In the meantime, we have a chancellor who hates doing maths, an education secretary who hates children, and a chief whip who seems to hate pretty much everyone. But towering over them all in the league of complete incompetence is Jeremy Hunt, a man who cannot even ring a bell without almost blinding an innocent bystander. Jeremy Hunt is more than an ineffectual career politician who has chummed his way into the inner sanctum of government. He is the exemplar of everything that is wrong with politicians. He is infecting us all with this repulsion, this uneasy sickness in our guts. He is patient zero. And there is no vaccine.

This article was amended on 7/10/2012. It was updated to remove references to the unfounded allegations that Jeremy Hunt enjoys fingering dogs. The Natflap regrets the error.

Permalink || Posted 7/10/2012 by Pete


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