Friday, 5 December 2008

196: Jeremy Thorpe 14

by Auberon Waugh
from "Auberon Waugh's Diary" in "Private Eye", 29 October 1977

After 45 years loyal membership of the Labour Party - years in which it is true to say, I devoted most of my life to the Labour movement and all it stood for - I think the moment may have come for me to join the Liberals.
The attraction of David's Bunny Club may not seem obvious at the present time, but the whole idea of the death penalty for homosexuals has always interested me very much, although I do not approve of capital punishment. Liberals, with their introduction of the bungled execution, seem to have found a compromise which works. Since the attempt on his life, Norman Scott has settled down with a nice young woman who has already given him a baby.
Perhaps the general use of attempted murder to tidy up a party's electoral appeal should be approached with greater caution, although I have always argued that an element of drama is needed to stimulate interest in the democratic process. If all members of an outgoing administration were hanged or imprisoned, as they usually deserve, this might whip up a bit of interest in election results.
The Tories are constantly moaning about how much better their chances would be if Grocer Heath could disappear. Heath is not, of course, a homosexualist, any more than Mr Thorpe is, but nobody can deny that lovely, oyster-eyed William Whitelaw would be leader of the Tories today if it were not for his unfortunate friendship with Grocer. Whenever I make the obvious suggestion to Tory policy groups, they receive it with a nervous giggle. Liberals seem to be made of sterner stuff.

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