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In defence of Katie Price

12 February 2018

3:22 PM

12 February 2018

3:22 PM

What do we talk about when we talk about Jordan? Not the country, or the river, or the cultural commentator Jordan Peterson but – as is my Philistine wont – the glamour model and businesswoman Katie ‘Jordan’ Price.  Last week, Katie Price addressed Parliament on the subject of social media trolling – which her 15-year-son is particularly affected by, due to his weight, ethnicity and handicaps. She is calling for online abuse to be made a criminal offence. Coming from the sticks-and-stones school of thought, I don’t agree. But if you’d ever wondered what sort of pond-life gets their jollies from calling a blind boy names, they took this opportunity to come out once more in force and condemn his mother in terms that might better have suited a serial killer.

Hatred – when directed at anyone who isn’t remotely like Hitler – tells us much more about the hater than the hated. Why is Jordan such an object of hate in an age of extreme sexual licence? The level of spite is way beyond anything her activities – horizontal or otherwise – might merit. One can only conclude that she has racked up a hat-trick jackpot in the unholy trinity of sex, money and class which disturbs the drab peace of dullards so savagely.

Nasty people call Jordan all manner of four-letter words – anything beyond four letters, one feels, would have them reaching for the thesaurus, if they didn’t think that it was a kind of dinosaur – but even those who pass for nice condemn her as ‘vulgar.’ Whenever I hear this supremely weasel-word I always think of the great Clough Williams-Ellis saying ‘I would rather be vulgar than boring – especially to myself’ and I conclude that this is a word used by desiccated snobs – with very little to be snobbish about – to describe the lively. Sexually, she is a sort of human litmus test; in the case of women who loathe her, they’re generally retired slappers who think they can distance themselves from slapperhood by slapping a big old scarlet S on her back. In the case of men, they never got to get with girls who looked like her when they were young and now kid themselves they’d turn her down – whereas of course she still wouldn’t even go there for the practise.

Never backwards in coming forwards, since finding finger-licking fame as a teenage glamour model, Price has established herself in a giddying number of disciplines; reality television, fashion design, equestrianism, singing and most of all, as an author. Her never-ending tsunami of novels, autobiographies and children’s books mean that she is one of the top thirty most financially successful British book-touters ever.

She is a wild card, who acts trashy because she gets a kick from it; with her endless cosmetic alterations, she seeks not to make herself more attractive to male meal-tickets but simply because she can – she is her own Dr Frankenstein and monster both. She is extraordinarily tough, approaching everything in her life from being the mother of a severely disabled child to winning Big Brother. She has a rolled-up-sleeve, stiff-upper-lipped can-do attitude which makes her unusual in a world of showbiz snowflakes. Her honesty has always been one of the most striking things about her.

Then there’s the impressive size of her bank balance. Ageing glamour girls are meant to suffer on the skids – Barbie on barbiturates! – or marry rich men and admit that being a freeloader was all they ever aspired to. Instead, Price has become a businesswoman who has turned the physical into the fiscal in a way no British glamourpuss with no actual talent has ever managed. Jordan has pushed through big birthdays and small spouses which would have had thinner-skinned glamour girls retire hurt to Hertfordshire, but it’s the very fact she’s stuck at it which puts certain sad-sacks’ backs up. Weirdly, the British can be far more resentful of the self-made rich than they are towards the inherited rich, perhaps because inheritors give us a get-out on our own failure; they were born to it/there’s no point in trying, whereas the self-made highlight our own lack of oomph.

Now that racism proper is – quite rightly – beyond the pale, social racism has replaced it as a way for the seething to release their poison. Brexit gave Lady Mucks of both sexes a field-day for their fear and loathing of the insubordinate proles – ‘It’s like we’re being told what to do by the bottom set at school’ as one Remainer put it. As the recent Grid Girl scolding proved, socialist snobs prefer our working-class – especially the women – in need of care and protection, on benefits and on the ropes, rather than toughing it out and using whatever means possible to make their way in this big bad beautiful world.

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