Via Guido Fawkes, news reaches us that shadow culture minister Ed Vaizey MP has been spotted lunching at Scotts of Mayfair — for an heroic, credit crunch-busting three hours, apparently — in the company of the accomplished Channel 4 television interviewee, fashion icon and occasional jobbing BritArtist, Tracey Emin.
Like any successful work of art, this is a story that can be enjoyed at a variety of levels. Guido’s readership, baying companionably at each other in the comments section, seem largely to have appreciated it on the level of ‘bloody fat troughing hoon, we’re paying his salary, how dare he, let’s burn something down’. Guido himself, I strongly suspect, took pleasure both in the spectacle of his own apparent omniscience — rather like the Eye of Providence on the back of Great Seal of the United States, but with rather more wi-fi access — and the happy fact that its target was, on this occasion, that rare creature in politics, someone who’s good at being teased.
For me, however — always the contrarian, except of course on those occasions where being a contrarian would be the obvious thing to be — the chief interest of the Vaizey-Emin lunch lies in what it seems to imply regarding the direction of Conservative arts policy. The conclusions it prompts are, alas, indigestible ones. Continue reading