Surely not everyone who lived in ancient Rome can have been a genius - Vladimir McTavish
Boris Johnson earned an incredible £4.8 million from speeches and book advances in his final year as an MP. No wonder he made such a ham-fisted job of being Prime Minister. He was obviously far too busy lining up book deals to care about trivial matters like the economy, the NHS and a global pandemic.
He’s not the only one. Jacob Rees Mogg made an eye-watering £350,000 last year over and above his ministerial and parliamentary salaries. This begs one very obvious question. Exactly what skills does Jacob Rees-Mogg possess to tempt anyone to pay him over three hundred grand? To most impartial onlookers, the man has very few visible talents. Unless, of course, someone were casting for the part of Lord Snooty in a stage musical based on the Beano or looking for someone to play a Gestapo officer in a remake of the 1980s sitcom “Allo, Allo”.
Entitled arrogance is not a particularly unique skill set in the circles in which he moves, even if he does try to dress up his shortcomings by quoting Latin. Like a lot of expensively-educated posh folk, I suspect Rees-Mogg uses Latin as an attempt to disguise the fact that he’s actually not very bright.
I’ve never quite understood why the ability to speak Latin should be seen a sign of intelligence. After all, not everyone in ancient Rome can have been a genius. For every original thinker like Pliny or Cicero, there must statistically have been several hundred knuckle-draggers hanging around the Forum. And all of them could speak Latin.
Jacob Rees-Mogg showed a blinding lack of intelligence last year when he described the Scottish Conservative leader as a “lightweight”. Nobody who has seen Douglas Ross would ever consider describing his weight as “light”. The Scottish Tory leader himself has three jobs. He’s an MP, an MSP and a football linesman, an onerous task which involves giving any 50/50 decision in favour of Rangers.