Old snobbery against new wealth

In: Uncategorized

7 Oct 2009

Amanda Platell exhibits the classic signs of aristocratic snobbery against new wealth in her description of Simon Cowell’s over-the-top 50th birthday party.

According to her report in the Mail: “the party’s entertainment included exotic topless dancers, naked women gyrating behind a big screen, and a guest enjoying a good whipping on stage from a dominatrix.

“But the highlight of the show was the appearance on stage of a giant replica of female genitalia, joined by two giant sex toys.”

Admittedly I would not choose to celebrate my 50th birthday in that way. But Platell, a former press secretary to the head of the Conservative Party, makes it clear later on in the article that she sees old, inherited wealth as OK:

“There is something deeply unpleasant about today’s nouveau celebrity rich and the excessive way they flaunt their wealth.

“The truth is that, on the whole, ‘old money’ hides its wealth, dresses scruffily and plays down its privilege.”

Her piece may sound radical to some but essentially it is a snobbish defence of old wealth and privilege.

I am not a fan of Simon Cowell but he probably has a slightly stronger claim to have earned his fortune than, say, Prince Charles. And think of those bizarre costumes worn at royal celebrations such as the trooping of the colour or the state opening of parliament.