I find myself in something of a quandary over the award of a knighthood to Salman Rushdie, for his ‘services to literature’ (as someone said in the paper today, “What services? What literature?”). It is true that under NuLabour knighthoods, peerages, etc. have become seriously devalueed by being presented as rewards/bribes to NuLabour supporters and funders and also used as another form of social engineering (ie; by making what’s left of the House of Lords more ‘diverse’ in appearance). But still, the idea of that smirking, useless waste of space Rushdie – whose books are pretentious, poorly-written, unreadable and deeply anti-British in the usual ‘post-colonial’ way, and were only published and praised to the skies by the ‘literati’ because of the latters’ incomprehensible sense of guilt at still being overwhelmingly middle-class and white – being knighted by Her Majesty and prancing around putting on further airs while writers and artists whose boots he is unfit to shine are ignored for being non-‘pc’, and unfashionable in actually having something worthwhile to say, is nauseating, to say the least. On the other hand, this rather unexpected parting gesture from Blair, who of course decides these things and ‘recommends’ them to the Queen, has clearly greatly annoyed those excitable Muslims again; which is basically a good thing if it demonstrates to them that the UK is prepared to stand up for the principle of free speech. Not that NuLabour have done much of that so far towards the Islamist loonies – so maybe there’s some other motive involved? I can’t decide whether my annoyance at this particularly irritating creative nonentity being so honoured outweighs my pleasure at the idea of sticking two fingers up at the hysterical ‘Islamic’ world. On the whole I think the best solution would be if some mad extremist were to take it into their mind to assassinate Rushdie just as he’s coming out of Buckingham Palace with a big self-satisfied smirk on his face! Or maybe even when he’s just going in? Unfortunately no doubt even more money will be spent, in addition to the £10 million that has already been expended, on protecting him from such an attack, so I suppose it’s a forlorn hope. Perhaps he will just choke on his own anti-British, post-colonial-chip-on-on-the-shoulder bile one of these mornings and save us all some money?
‘Sir’ Salman? Hmmm.