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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Is Cameron a twit?

No, I am not going to become personally abusive. Except to ask what did the Tory leader think he was doing when he swore on radio yesterday?

Speculation is rife as to whether Mr. Cameron knew that 'twat' was in fact a swear word or if he was just trying to sound unconventional and in tune with the hoodies he has previously urged us to embrace. As is pointed out by the radio presenter it is unlikely that this sort of language would have been condoned at the swanky public schools that Cameron attended.

The Independent has an account from the radio presenter, Christian O'Connell as to how Cameron's advisors reacted:

O'Connell disclosed that Gabby Bertin, the Tory leader's press secretary, had been less relaxed about the salty language used by her boss.

O'Connell said: "She leapt out of her skin after the first part of the interview when there had been some language.

"He said: 'That seemed to go OK.' She said: ‘Yeah, apart from the language.'

"He said: 'Oh, yeah, ‘pissed', sorry about that, I'm really sorry.' ? She said: ‘No, it was the ‘twat'.

"He said: ‘That's not a swear word.' I think he must be posh, where a lot of them don't think ‘twat' is a swear word. His press secretary went: ‘It is'."

The presenter joked that radio regulators did not take too dim a view of the word, explaining: "In terms of the fines we can get, it is not one of the big ones."

But Tony Thorne, a language consultant to Kings College, London, said the word was "genuinely provocative and earthy word" which could "get you a punch in the mouth" if used in public.

He said: "Swearing can be used by the middle class to make them appear more progressive and more authentic.

"I suspect David Cameron was trying to be edgy and gritty. But he misjudged it – there is still a big silent majority for whom this sort of language is offensive."

I do not think that the Tory leader is going to live this down in a hurry.
"He said: 'That seemed to go OK.' She said: ‘Yeah, apart from the language.'

"He said: 'Oh, yeah, ‘pissed', sorry about that, I'm really sorry.' ? She said: ‘No, it was the ‘twat'.

I think that has to go down as one of my favourite exchanges in the whole history of dialogue, ever.

It sounds like it could have been scripted by Armando Iannucci for 'The Thick of It'.

My English teacher used twat all the time so did the PE teacher. Language well I was sitting out side a twelve year old school boys football match , my task watching the young referee , giving him a mark and an idea of what he was doing right or wrong, when a bloke next to me used the word referee your a twat, he was the coach, I was pushed over and said excuse me this is the lads second game he is fourteen for god sake, he turned to me and said your a twat as well, sadly for him I'm not a twat I'm a registered football association coach, he then had a letter to appear before a committee , where he again stated well gents he is a twat, case was Twat is it swear word answer by the football association no it was not, but he was still suspended for six months for keeping up a tirade against the referee, I was told to moderate my idea of foul and or abusive language.
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