OK, now I have been fairly unmoved to post about this in recent days. But I just went and looked at Dale’s blog, and was struck by the absolutely bizarre degree to which the right is wetting itself about this minor gaffe. They are desperately trying to keep it in people’s minds, when most of us are quite happy to move on from what is clearly a fairly open and shut case of Piers Morgan being a rascal and a politician not wanting to sound like a prude.

I am reminded of nothing more than Bill Hicks’s bit about the manufactured controversy over Basic Instinct at the time of its original release. Here, I’ve rewritten it to explain the parallel I’m drawing:

I saw this news story recently which everyone called “Cleggover”. Okay now. Quick capsule review: Piece-of-Shit. Okay now. Yeah: end of story, by the way. Don’t get caught up in that fevered hype phoney fucking debate about that Piece-of-Shit interview.
“Is he bragging about this, is that too many, are politicians becoming too dddddddd…..”
You’re just confused, you don’t get it, you’ve forgotten how to judge correctly. Take a deep breath:
Look at it again.
“Oh it’s a Piece-of-Shit!”
Exactly, that’s all it is. Piers Morgan squatted, let out a loaf, they put a fucking title on it, put it on a marquee, Morgan’s shit, piece of shit, walk away.
“But is it too, how would we feel about a female MP who ddddd…..”
You’re getting really baffled here. Piece-of-Shit! Now walk away. That’s all it is, it’s nothing more! Free yourself folks, if you see it, Piece-of-Shit, say it and walk away. You’re right! You’re right! Not those fuckers who want to tell you how to think! You’re fucking right!

This doesn’t matter. It’s like Blair’s “5 times a night” thing; yes, everyone sits around and goes “ewww” for a week or so, but it’s nothing more than that, and most people realise this. Unfortunately, the Tories are so unsettled by Clegg that they will make themselves sound absolutely batshit crazy trying to drive forward a media narrative that isn’t there that this is “the beginning of the end for Clegg”.

You might think that’s a charicature, by the way. Well go look here, for instance:

Nick Clegg has had a disastrous week. His comments about the number of women he had slept with have made him into a laughing-stock while his party’s position on the Lisbon treaty becomes more incoherent by the day. Clegg’s interview with The Times this morning shows how difficult it is going to be for him to get past the Clegg-over business. Helen Rumbelow and Alice Miles press him repeatedly on the issue and you have to imagine that every other interviewer is going to do the same for the foreseeable future.

Guys, take a deep breath here, and listen to Hicks. As much as you may want this to be something more, this is a piece-of-shit news story, and nothing more. If you want to have an argument with Clegg about policy, go for it. This makes you look silly.