As of today, Tony Benn no longer exists
After getting Razaq’s letter offering to make me rich by helping him realise his dream of assuaging his conscience before he died of a horrible illness, I thought that I’d indulge in a bit of scam-baiting to get his picture. That’s when I became Mac Hooper.
Mac Hooper, 76 and retired, lives with his daughter, son-in-law and grandson in Nottingham. Mac Hooper is a novice with computers and emails, has a bit of money and feels that he’d like to put a bit of good back into a world where he’d been a bit of a bastard in his time. I thought he was just the sort of person who’d appeal to Razaq and I was right.
I got his pic. Two of them, in fact. Poor thing, he does look poorly, doesn’t he? Mission accomplished, I could have stopped then but once I’d hooked Razaq, I felt that pulling him in would be quite fun. To do that, I needed to send him a pic of myself.
I've removed the pics he sent me. One of my readers (see comments) told me that they are the pictures of a man who is since dead. His widow has been distressed by the use of her husbands's pictures in this way.
My first inclination was to find a picture of some despot or other. Someone who’d been in the public eye but who was less likely to be recognised these days. So no Saddam Hussein. Too young, anyway. Margaret Thatcher? Wrong sex. Augusto Pinochet? P W Botha? Good choices! I especially liked the idea of P W Botha. These guys had been bad in their time. Really bad! Their heyday was long gone. Whomever I chose had to pass as Mac Hooper, retired Nottingham businessmen, beloved grandfather. Military uniforms and admonishing fingers wouldn’t do. But every single picture I found of them was forbidding, threatening or angry. I should have known that avuncular and despot were unlikely bedfellows so I moved on to another unpopular species. I could have gone for estate agents or lawyers but chose politicians instead.
That’s how Tony Benn came to be Mac Hooper.
I’m now at the point where I must return a signed power of attorney to his attorney in Maida Vale. Since letters from Nottingham don’t usually have Dutch stamps on them, I’m visiting my sister in the Netherlands. The old dear had a stroke so I’ve come to visit her for a while. I was going to post it to him but Razaq’s boring me now. And, anyway, tweaking the appearance of this blog has been much more interesting.
So, as of today, my Tony Benn no longer exists.
Razaq and his cronies are the dark side of the really unpleasant face of capitalism. Actually, that’s not true. They’re just opportunists preying on naiveté, ignorance and greed. Not really the sort of territory Tony Benn would have much truck with.
Tony Benn was a politician in less cynical times. Corrupt politicians weren’t uncommon in his day, of course, but those were also more principled times. Tony Blair is no Tony Benn! Or am I the naive one here? So what would he have thought of all this? Not much, I’m sure, but I’d like to think that he’d see the humour in being Mac Hooper for a while.
After ignoring Razaq's last few emails, this is the one I received yesterday: